M. Kulasegaran

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M. Kula Segaran

M Kula Segaran.jpg
Minister of Human Resources
In office
21 May 2018 – 24 February 2020
MonarchMuhammad V
Prime MinisterMahathir Mohamad
DeputyMahfuz Omar
Preceded byRichard Riot Jaem
Succeeded bySaravanan Murugan
ConstituencyIpoh Barat
Member of the Malaysian Parliament
for Ipoh Barat, Perak
Assumed office
21 March 2004
Preceded byHo Cheong Sing (MCABN)
Majority45,724 (2018)
29,038 (2013)
15,534 (2008)
598 (2004)
Member of the Malaysian Parliament
for Teluk Intan, Perak
In office
17 May 1997 – 29 November 1999
Preceded byOng Tin Kim (GerakanBN)
Succeeded byMah Siew Keong (GerakanBN)
Majority2,916 (1997)
Personal details
M. Kula Segaran s/o V. Murugeson

(1957-08-10) 10 August 1957 (age 63)
Sitiawan, Perak, Federation of Malaya (now Malaysia)
Political partyDemocratic Action Party (Malaysia) (DAP)
Other political
Pakatan Harapan (PH)
Pakatan Rakyat (PR)
Barisan Alternatif (BA)
Spouse(s)Jayalachimi Kanapathy
OccupationPolitician, barrister

M. Kula Segaran s/o V. Murugeson (Tamil: மு.குலசேகரன், romanized: Mu.Kulacēkaraṉ; born 10 August 1957), commonly referred to as Kula, is a Malaysian politician, barrister and formerly serving as the Minister of Human Resources. He is the National Vice-Chairman of the Democratic Action Party (DAP), he also served as the Member of Parliament for Ipoh Barat, Perak.[1][2] Kula Segaran is an ethnic Tamil and has voiced many issues affecting the Malaysian Indian community.[3] He sparked interest on social media for wearing thallapa during swearing-in ceremony as cabinet minister.[4]

Personal life[edit]

M. Kula Segaran was born to a rubber tapper father in an estate in Sitiawan, Perak.[5] Growing up, he and his brother had to look after cows, goats and also clean up the containers used to gather latex after school.[5] In 1982, he was admitted as barrister at Lincoln’s Inn in London.[5]

Political career[edit]

Kula Segaran, a barrister, was first elected to Parliament in a 1997 by-election for the seat of Teluk Intan. He shifted to the seat of Ipoh Barat at the 1999 general election, but lost. He re-contested the seat in the 2004 election, and this time won by a narrow margin. He was re-elected by wider margins in subsequent 2008 election, 2013 election and 2018 election.[6]

Indian Rights[edit]

Kula Segaran is an ethnic Tamil and has voiced many issues affecting the Malaysian Indian community. He has claimed that "Indians are treated like third-class citizens"[3] and criticised the demolition of Hindu temples.[7]

Minister of Human Resources[edit]

After the opposition coalition Pakatan Harapan (of which the DAP is part of) emerged victorious at the 2018 Malaysian general election by forming the Federal Government, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad announced M.Kula Segaran's appointment as the Minister of Human Resources. He succeeds Richard Riot Jaem .

Kula is the first Human Resources Minister to conduct the National Labour Advisory Council (NLAC), a tripartite stakeholders meeting, 10 times in a year (2019) . The government, Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) and Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) are stakeholders in the NLAC.

Kula recently made international headlines for declaring War on Human Trafficking in Malaysia after acknowledging that the country had been hurting from it.[8] The Minister held Townhall sessions with employers urging them to start being more accountable and to assist the government in eradicating Forced Labour. Kula urged employers to start incorporating Social Compliance Audit reports as part of their accountability.[9] The Minister wants to move up from being at Tier 2 Watchlist of the US State Department's Trafficking in Persons report and is working closely with stakeholders to achieve this.

He has overseen several law amendments to better protect against discrimination as well as enhancing worker's rights and social protection.[10]

Kula has also championed the rights of the Orang Asli community as provided them a pathway to learn technical skills through Institutes under the Ministry.[11]

17 Orang Asli students were enrolled in ILP Ipoh in 2020 following the 7 enrolled in 2019 after the encouragement of the Minister.[12]

As outlines in Kula's 2019 achievements as Minister, most notably was Empowering TVET learning to prepare for future jobs and emerging technologies that are shaping the industries of the future.[13]

Parliamentarians for Global Action (PGA)[edit]

Kula was made chairman of the Malaysian chapter of the Parliamentarians for Global Action (PGA) in 2019. He is also an Executive Board member of the group. In that capacity he has been advocating the need for Malaysia to ratify the Rome Statute to the International Criminal Court (ICC) and to call for the Abolishment of the Mandatory Death Penalty and the ratification of The Arms Trade Treaty (ATT).


In 2007, Kula Segaran was suspended from Parliament for four days for disobeying the Deputy Speaker,[14] and in 2008 he was called a "bastard" and a "bloody bastard" by a government politician whom he accused of being "hated" by Indian constituents.[15]

Election results[edit]

Parliament of Malaysia[16][17][18][19]
Year Constituency Votes Pct Opponent(s) Votes Pct Ballots cast Majority Turnout
1997 P73 Telok Intan, Perak. M. Kulasegaran (DAP) 15,007 55% Chee See Choke (Gerakan) 12,091 45% 27,639 2,916 53.67%
1999 P62 Ipoh Barat, Perak. M. Kulasegaran (DAP) 21,477 45.84% Ho Cheong Sing (MCA) 25,155 53.70% 48,696 3,678 68.24%
Jaga N. Nathan (MDP) 215 0.46%
2004 P65 Ipoh Barat, Perak. M. Kulasegaran (DAP) 22,935 50.66% Ho Cheong Sing (MCA) 22,337 49.34% 46,768 598 68.38%
2008 M. Kulasegaran (DAP) 32,576 65.65% Yik Phooi Hong (MCA) 17,042 34.35% 50,641 15,534 72.58%
2013 M. Kulasegaran (DAP) 45,420 73.21% Cheng Wei Yee (MCA) 16,382 26.41% 63,074 29,038 81.11%
Kalwant Singh Sujan Singh (IND) 235 0.38%
2018 M. Kulasegaran (DAP) 55,613 83.78% Cheng Wei Yee (MCA) 9,889 16.22% 66,380 45,724 78.21%


  1. ^ "M. Kula Segaran, Y.B. Tuan" (in Malay). Parliament of Malaysia. Retrieved 28 June 2010.
  2. ^ "DAP: Leadership". Democratic Action Party. Archived from the original on 12 June 2010. Retrieved 28 June 2010.
  3. ^ a b "Malaysian police break up rally". BBC News. 25 November 2007. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
  4. ^ https://www.nst.com.my/news/nation/2018/05/371994/why-did-kulasegaran-wear-turban-cabinet-swearing-ceremony
  5. ^ a b c Ivan Loh (10 June 2018). "From the rubber estate to Putrajaya". The Star Online. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  6. ^ "MP's law firm burgled". The Star (Malaysia). 31 March 2004. Archived from the original on 4 June 2011. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
  7. ^ "Motion on temple rejected". The Star (Malaysia). 2 November 2007. Archived from the original on 4 June 2011. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
  8. ^ Tuesday, 12 Feb 2019 11:57 AM MYT Thasha Jayamanogaran. "Kulasegaran to declare war on forced labour and human trafficking | Malay Mail". www.malaymail.com. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  9. ^ "No compromise on social compliance audit report — Kula Segaran". Borneo Post Online. 12 January 2020. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  10. ^ Peters, Watson (25 October 2019). "Kula must be doing something right". Free Malaysia Today. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  11. ^ Bernama (25 January 2020). "Kula: HR Ministry committed to bring change to 'marginalised' Orang Asli". Malaysiakini. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  12. ^ Saturday, 01 Feb 2020 02:36 PM MYT. "17 Orang Asli students enrol in skills training at ILP Ipoh | Malay Mail". www.malaymail.com. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  13. ^ Saturday, 18 Jan 2020 08:05 PM MYT. "Empowering TVET among priorities of HR Ministry | Malay Mail". www.malaymail.com. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  14. ^ "4-day suspension for MP Kulasegaran". The Star (Malaysia). 13 December 2007. Archived from the original on 4 June 2011. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
  15. ^ "Tajuddin uses 'b*****d' on Kulasegaran". Asia One. 6 November 2008. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
  16. ^ "Keputusan Pilihan Raya Umum Parlimen/Dewan Undangan Negeri" (in Malay). Election Commission of Malaysia. Retrieved 4 February 2017. Percentage figures based on total turnout.
  17. ^ "Malaysia General Election". undiinfo Malaysian Election Data. Malaysiakini. Retrieved 4 February 2017. Results only available from the 2004 election.
  18. ^ "Malaysia Decides 2008". The Star (Malaysia). Archived from the original on 9 April 2008. Retrieved 3 January 2010.
  19. ^ "KEPUTUSAN PILIHAN RAYA UMUM 13". Sistem Pengurusan Maklumat Pilihan Raya Umum (in Malay). Election Commission of Malaysia. Retrieved 24 March 2017.