Monday, May 28, 2007

forcible conversion to islam of 19 year old student... another 'talibanised' act?!?...

one pathetically barbaric act have yet to pass, another one came up!...

i wonder why didn't we really hear about this particular news via the media, blogs, etc... major supression?!?.. no public acknowledgement to it?!?... just another normal barbaric act?!?.. people do not know about it?!?...

honestly, wat is malaysia is coming to?!?.. is this a islam hadhari way to celebrate 50 years of independence?!?... i dunno, you tell me pls...


With all due respect may we humbly refer to the above matter wherein we act for Mr.Ragu a/l Cheelathurai (No.K/P: 860301-56-6105) and his family of No.18, Jalan 2/92 B Taman Kobena, 56100, Kuala Lumpur.We wish to bring to your kind attention the abhorrent, unjust and unconscionable manner in which a nineteen(19) year old student of youthful age was forcibly converted into the Islam religion whilst studying at a fully residential government skills training institution without his parent’s knowledge and consent.

Brief Facts

1. In line with the Prime Minister’s and the Government’s constant call for national unity, national integration and racial harmony our client had made a concerted effort to also befriend his Malay/Muslim friends.

2. Throughout the 1 ½ years out of our client’s two (2) years course at the National Youth Skills Institute (Institut Kemahiran Belia Negara) at Dusun Tua, Ulu Langat a fully residential Institution (hereinafter referred to as the said School)., numerous attempts were made by the Islamic teachers (ustaz), officials and friends to drill into our client and/or brainwash him to convert to the Islamic faith. All this was done without our client’s parents and family’s knowledge or consent especially so bearing in mind that our client was merely a 19 year old youth at that material time.

3. As the Indian/non Muslim students were a tiny minority at the said Institute, our client merely keeps quiet to be polite and in order for him to continue and complete his course without any hindrance. At all material times our client never ever had any intention of embracing the Islamic religion or renouncing his Hindu faith for that matter.

4. On or at about 11.00 a.m. on 26/1/2006 our client Mr.Ragu a/l Cheelathurai who was at that material time merely 19 years old was a final year student at the said School in the Wiring Course (Note: Our client was the only Hindu Indian pupil on this course). During the midst of his practical wiring course our client was abruptly and forcibly taken away by two (2) religious teachers, one Ustaz Azrin and another Ustaz Basri, and a committee member of the said School’s mosque, Encik Churaimai to the Islamic Religious Department in Kajang under the false pretense of taking our client out. Never at any time did they tell our client that he would be brought to the Islamic Religious Department in Kajang.

5. Upon arrival at the Islamic Religious Department in Kajang our client was forced to sign certain documents indicating his conversion to the Islamic religion which our client did under duress, oppression and under fear of being expelled from his Institution and bearing in mind that he was merely six (6) months away from graduating. Our client was then pronounced a Muslim and then given a Muslim name i.e. Muhammad Ashraf bin Abdullah without both his Hindu parents knowledge and consent. He was then issued with a letter of acknowledgment of his conversion to Islam dated 26/1/2006 at about 12.00 p.m. on 26/1/2006 which also has a picture of our client in school uniform in it. Our client was then threatened not to inform his parents of what had transpired. A copy of this letter dated 26/1/2006 is enclosed herewith as “Enclosure 1”.

6. Upon returning to the said school our client contacted his father, Mr.Cheelathurai a/l Alagesu (No K/P Lama: 550303-06-5183) and informed him\ of what had transpired. Our client’s father rushed to his son’s hostel after working hours and at that very same moment (which was about 12.00 p.m. on 27/1/2007) removed his son from the said school on the advise of MHS President Dato’ A.Vaithalingam.

7. Within twenty-four (24) hours our client had on 27/1/2006 at about 11.00 a.m. lodged a police report No. Ulu Langat/000127/06 at the Cheras Police Station with regards to the aforesaid forced conversion to Islam. Up to date there has been no criminal prosecutions against the said religious teachers and officials by the learned Attorney General. A copy of this letter is enclosed herewith as “Enclosure 2”.

8. Our client and his family were instructed by the Cheras Police to meet one ASP Mohd Zawawi Abdullah of the IPD Kajang. At about 1.00 p.m. the said ASP Mohd Zawawi brought our client into his room and our client once again complained that he was force to convert to Islam as per the said police report. Thereafter ASP Mohd Zawawi tried persuading our client that Islam was a good religion but our client again kept quiet.

9. At about 4.00 p.m. the said Encik Churaimi arrived and our client again repeated that he was forced to convert to Islam. Encik Churaimi then told our client to tear off the said letter of conversion to Islam dated 26/1/2006 and to continue to pretend to be a Hindu.

10. In the interim our client had sought the assistance of the Malaysia Hindu Sangam (MHS) under the patronage of Malaysia’s only Hindu and longest serving Cabinet minister Y.B. Dato’ Seri S. Samy Vellu. MHS had vide their letter dated 22/6/2006 verified and confirmed that our client is a practicing Hindu. A copy of the said MHS letter is enclosed herewith as “Enclosure 3”.

11. Our client thereafter affirmed a Statutory Declaration (SD) about his forced conversion to Islam. A copy of the said SD dated 9/2/2006 is enclosed herewith as “Enclosure 4”.

12. Vide our client’s previous Solicitor Messrs T.Raja & Co’s letter dated 16/2/2006 and duly acknowledged receipt by the Legal Adviser of the Islamic Affairs Department of Selangor on 21/2/2006, our client’s said previous Solicitor amongst others demanded an annulment of our client’s alleged conversion to Islam. A copy of the said Solicitors letter dated 16/2/2006 is enclosed herewith as “Enclosure 5”.

13. Vide T.Raja & Co’s letter dated 14/3/2006, a reminder was sent to the said Legal Adviser of the Selangor State Islamic Affairs Department which was duly acknowledged receipt on 17/3/2006 for their decision but to no avail. A copy of T.Raja & Co’s letter dated 14/3/2006 is enclosed herewith as “Enclosure 6”.

14. In the interim our client dared not return to the said Institute and was accordingly sacked vide the Institution’s letter dated 24/4/2006. A copy of the said Institute’s letter dated 24/4/2006 is enclosed herewith as “Enclosure 7”.

15. Since our clients forcible conversion he has neither attended any religious classes or courses nor has he been circumcised and he has since refused to return the said School. Our client does not believe and has never practiced the Islamic religion but has continued living as a Hindu all his life up to date. Mr Cheelathurai like many other non-Muslim parents have placed their children under the trust and care of such National Government State Institutions with full confidence and believe that their children would be returned to their care holding the same faith they were born and raised with. YAB, your goodself and the Malaysian Government had repeatedly called for “National Integration, National Harmony and National Unity”. Yet in the face of such forcible conversion that has occurred to our client on 26/1/2006, your goodselves’ vision of “National Integration, National Harmony and National Unity” has been blurred and further fosters disintegration, disharmony and disunity rather than national integration, harmony and national unity. Over the years, we have received numerous reports of such practices by religious teachers, officials and students in many other such public institutions like MRSM, UTM, other National Youth Skills training Institutions, Vocational schools, Universities and other Institutions of Higher Education especially those which are fully residential and with an almost all Malay/Muslim student population. The National Service Programmes may also be of a serious concern to non-Muslim parents in the future. Our client’s father for that matter has decided not to send any of his children for the National Service training as he has since lost confidence in the state authorities.

With respect our client appeals that for instances of this nature not to happen again in the future that your goodself forthwith issue a circular accordingly. Should your goodselves not rectify this abuse, the 13 million non-Muslim population in Malaysia would be unduly alarmed and it would go to the core and fabric of our already alarmed multi-racial and multi-religious society.

It is a sad day for Malaysia that even after fifty (50) years of independence the Islamic Religious authorities could abuse their powers in this manner and in direct violation of Article 11 of the Federal Constitution. Instead of progressing we are regressing in terms of multi-racialism and multi-religionism. We regret to bring to your kind attention
that against ground reality the government chooses to showcase Malaysia as a model multi-racial and multi-religious society. We pray for your goodselves and the Malaysian Cabinet’s intervention to calm and ally the fears of non-Muslim parents like Mr.Cheelathurai, in sending their non-Muslim children to National Government schools and institutions and especially to such educational institutions which are fully residential. We hope your goodselves also see the fears and insecurity of the non-Muslim Indian and Chinese parents, 50% and 95% of whom choose to send their children to Tamil and Chinese Primary schools respectively even after 50 years of independence.

With all due respect our client hereby humbly calls upon YAB and the Malaysian Cabinet to intervene and forthwith direct and in any event within fourteen (14) days from the date hereof that the Department of Islamic Religious Affairs of Kajang revokes/annuls this forced conversion of our client on 26/1/2006 vide their letter dated 26/1/2006 and to issue an unconditional letter to that effect to our client failing which our client would be left with no alternative but to institute legal proceedings accordingly at the Shah Alam High Court.

Thank you

No comments: