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Sakmongkol ak 47

Monday 29 September 2008

Bikin dulu, nanti kita belakang kira!

We must find out why a temple in Selangor is torn down. The reasons may be the same as when the previous BN government which ruled Selangor tore down a temple.

So before we create a ruckus and make fuss over the whole thing, please ask any of our ministers, MP and ADUNS to check the facts first.

In most cases temples are constructed on land which have not been designated places of worship. You cant construct temple, mosques or suraus any place you want. You have to apply for such land from the land office and then get permission from the relevant municipal council to build one.

Most likely, on one fine day, some people get together with some holy man, and decided on the spot to construct a temple on such a location. And maybe, it was done with the tacit connivance of the local ADUN who may have said, build first , we can belakang kira. When a temple was built on such a location, all the council people, the politicians for that area, winked on its construction.

All of them, including the holiest among us, ignored the fact the land has not be designated as a place of worship. And maybe the land has not been applied for. Now, pray tell, wasn’t building a place of worship without government approval a wrong? Do we now condone that transgression and are prepared to create a precedence that as of now, any Tom, Dick and Harry can start constructing temples, mosques and whatever structures we desire in defiance of the law?

Mana boleh itu macam?


balan 30 September 2008 at 12:11  

You were spot on,

They are simply too emotional when it come to race and religion rather than looking at what is the rightfull thing to do.

Now,I say, 'Padan Muka' to Indian's who supported PR thinking that PR government will allow anyone to built whatever they want anywhere.

More on this and HINDRAF on my blog, feel free to read.


Anonymous,  30 September 2008 at 14:24  

How about a Bill of Rights, for us, Rakyat???


Here’s another gem dug out from way, way back in the good ol’ days of the US of A, when things were quite plain, simple and straightforward.

We could draw inspiration from …..

The following, which is the text of the Virginia Declaration of Rights (1776):

I That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.

II That all power is vested in, and consequently derived from, the people; that magistrates are their trustees and servants, and at all times amenable to them.

III That government is, or ought to be, instituted for the common benefit, protection, and security of the people, nation or community; of all the various modes and forms of government that is best, which is capable of producing the greatest degree of happiness and safety and is most effectually secured against the danger of maladministration; and that, whenever any government shall be found inadequate or contrary to these purposes, a majority of the community hath an indubitable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to reform, alter or abolish it, in such manner as shall be judged most conducive to the public weal.

IV That no man, or set of men, are entitled to exclusive or separate emoluments or privileges from the community, but in consideration of public services; which, not being descendible, neither ought the offices of magistrate, legislator, or judge be hereditary.

V That the legislative and executive powers of the state should be separate and distinct from the judicative; and, that the members of the two first may be restrained from oppression by feeling and participating the burthens of the people, they should, at fixed periods, be reduced to a private station, return into that body from which they were originally taken, and the vacancies be supplied by frequent, certain, and regular elections in which all, or any part of the former members, to be again eligible, or ineligible, as the laws shall direct.

VI That elections of members to serve as representatives of the people in assembly ought to be free; and that all men, having sufficient evidence of permanent common interest with, and attachment to, the community have the right of suffrage and cannot be taxed or deprived of their property for public uses without their own consent or that of their representatives so elected, nor bound by any law to which they have not, in like manner, assented, for the public good.

VII That all power of suspending laws, or the execution of laws, by any authority without consent of the representatives of the people is injurious to their rights and ought not to be exercised.

VIII That in all capital or criminal prosecutions a man hath a right to demand the cause and nature of his accusation to be confronted with the accusers and witnesses, to call for evidence in his favor, and to a speedy trial by an impartial jury of his vicinage, without whose unanimous consent he cannot be found guilty, nor can he be compelled to give evidence against himself; that no man be deprived of his liberty except by the law of the land or the judgement of his peers.

IX That excessive bail ought not to be required, nor excessive fines imposed; nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

X That general warrants, whereby any officer or messenger may be commanded to search suspected places without evidence of a fact committed, or to seize any person or persons not named, or whose offense is not particularly described and supported by evidence, are grievous and oppressive and ought not to be granted.

XI That in controversies respecting property and in suits between man and man, the ancient trial by jury is preferable to any other and ought to be held sacred.

XII That the freedom of the press is one of the greatest bulwarks of liberty and can never be restrained but by despotic governments.

XIII That a well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the proper, natural, and safe defense of a free state; that standing armies, in time of peace, should be avoided as dangerous to liberty; and that, in all cases, the military should be under strict subordination to, and be governed by, the civil power.

XIV That the people have a right to uniform government; and therefore, that no government separate from, or independent of, the government of Virginia, ought to be erected or established within the limits thereof.

XV That no free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue and by frequent recurrence to fundamental principles.

XVI That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator and the manner of discharging it, can be directed by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and therefore, all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience; and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice forbearance, love, and charity towards each other.

Adopted unanimously June 12, 1776 Virginia Convention of Delegates drafted by Mr. George Mason

Anonymous,  30 September 2008 at 15:03  

Why is there so many "private temples" in Malaysia ? Many groups had tried to apply for permits to set up temples but more often than not they had been rejected.

So is it any wonder that we have "illegal temples" found in abundance in Malaysia ?

Anonymous,  30 September 2008 at 17:59  

Apparently in this ampang case, the temple committee has come out to say they themselves had demolished it to make renovations.

On second thought, one wonders how something that has been demolished can be renovated.

Anyway, there are three things i want to write here on this subject of illegally placed temples:

one, don't underestimate the beliefs of human beings; some forty five years ago, there was this little roadside indian deity temple under a tree on the road behind gurney drive in penang; the little hut faced the roundabout (now gone, as is the hut). One day, some robbers stole the ornamental spear of the deity. Two weeks later a policeman found it and returned it to the deity, although his own faith is something else. One week after he had a dream, and a little amount of luck. Not much. But enough to tell you things are not what they seem.

two, there doesn't seem to be a firm practical policy on how to treat requests for places of worship that is seen (and i mean SEEN) to be fair to (a) the land authorities to discourage people from erecting whatever they like on govt property, (b) the believers who want a suitable place to formally put up their temples and churches, and (c) the faith administrators who are non-muslim in terms of titles, permits and state support.

We have big mosques and madrasahs built with state support on choice land in tamans where there are less muslims than people of other faiths. Yet as has been said many times, the authorities drag their feet if they even give approval for the erection of temples and churches in places where they are not present.

These authorities are muslim. That's the first observation. They drag their feet or throw in excuses or squash applications. That's the second observation. There is an 'official' religion for this country. That's the third observation. People pay taxes, obey laws, and want to practise their faiths in the right way and right place. That's the fourth observation. Little deities and templelots mushroom all over the place at odd corners even to the extent of being on unidentified state land because there is no proper administration of the whole matter. That's the fifth observation.

Now, why doesn't Umno recognize that these five observations spell the cause of all the troubles on the issue of illegal temples - and do something finally about the matter in all tamans, and States?

Five observations, one question, no answer.

That's the answer.

Ariff Sabri 30 September 2008 at 20:00  

dear walla,
i have no defense to yr arguments which are very persuasive. i wish the authorities concern will treat applications to build temples with a greater sense of urgency. if the authorities cant approve on a particular site, they must answer quickly and offer an alternative site. at the same time the proposers of the temples must work with their assemblyman to champion their cause. in addition, they can petition direct to the MB. as to dragging their feet on such applications, that is unacceptable. temple peoples are man or woman of faith. they shall find some well meaning officers willing to assist.

Anonymous,  30 September 2008 at 21:11  


Thank you for being fair and candid.

One thing i cannot understand about Umno is why after so many years of running this country, some people somewhere can still do things their own way despite policies which might have already spelt things out about how to treat issues pertaining to different communities.

There are two aspects to this: one, going against the ruling, and two, going against the spirit and intent (niat) of the ruling.

What angers many people, and a reason for the fall of Umno wherever they are, is that people see both (a) and (b) applied to non-muslims (faiths) and non-malays (state support) almost exclusively, especially where it can favour the muslim and the malay.

Some malays in the non-umno parties will also add that there's another category (c) non-umno political party malay members, and they are marginalized in govt contracts. I don't know whether this is true.

It is not just about faith matters. In schools too, there have been occasions reported of teachers or principals making statements or enforcing their own rulings that are hurtful to non-malays and non-muslims.

Maybe that's why they want to put up the race relations act. But have they thought who would be the ones who will getting most of the punitive measures? And what is worse, what will the rakyat think if the way the punitive measures will be enforced will be no different from the way the corrupt and racists have been 'punished' of late by Umno-run organs - namely suspension or interdiction only?

The best ruling one can think of is this old one:

don't do onto others what one doesn't want done onto oneself (or its positive variant onto..wants..)

You must forgive me for using the word 'malay' and other labels. It's not intended to cast any aspersion..but i read the ground temperature and the thermometer says that.

I look forward to the day when we can say 'this human being is right (or wrong)' and not have to mention by race ..that is the day when abundant blessings will return to this land.

If Umno can bring this about because it can change the hearts and mind of men, then it would have achieved the real mission of the party - to lift all up equally and with fairness.

It is to the credit of the malays that so many of them had voted for the non-malay candidates despite the nagging feeling, one is sure, that they may well have voted away the 'special rights' sold to them by Umno for so many years. To defend and support what is right and fair even at possibly one's own expense is surely a hallmark of greatness even in ordinary men and women.

But there will be no loss to anyone because such goodwill must and shall be returned. It has to be returned. We are after all brothers of the same land, countrymen of the same root, defenders of all that is good of Malaysia.

Selamat hari raya, dear sakmongkol.

Tell what you would like to read, if i can find the link, i'll post for you. Without any money, that's the least i can do.

Anonymous,  1 October 2008 at 04:56  


It seems rather odd to me that this issue of illegal temples has only crept out into the public's consciousness recently. Perhaps as Sakmongkol says, every one involved, temple committee, worshippers, politicians, administrators, etc were in the loop when the illegal temple was built - it's just a matter of build first and belakang kira about the consequences. They were just hoping nobody would mention or do anything about it. But now that somebody has, it has become a problem.

Islam is the official religion of this country - no quotation marks, please - and this was agreed upon when they wrote the constitution.

Remember that when the previous Selangor govt demolished a temple in Shah Alam, it also demolished a surau along with it.

It is quite unfair to impute that the administrators who are mainly Malay have embarked on a systematic demolition programme or blocked the building the places of worship of religions other than Islam. If this were so how did PJ end up with having the highest number of churches per square kilometre?. There are more churches (and temples, apparently) in PJ than mosques.

Also, almost all state govts have an Indian rep - surely they would have voiced out their misgivings as did Samy Vellu in 2002? He commissioned a study after a run-in with Khir Toyo over temples in 2001.

Here is a post from MIC's Yayasan Strategik Sosial regarding temples:

"YSS has managed to gather much information and data on temples through the survey. The survey revealed that there are 363 temples in the two districts. Petaling has 240 temples while Kuala Langat has 123 temples. It was found that a majority of the temples had not been registered. (see table below) Out 363 temples only 16.5 % or 60 temples are registered. The land on which the registered temples are sited are owned by the temples...A majority of the temples are located on Government land. Out of 363 temples, 138 temples are located on Government land while 137 temples and 30 temples are located on private and temple-owned property respectively. The land ownership of 33 temples was not known. "

Fuller report here:

I agree that temples and other places of worship should be managed better and this matter should be handled carefully, with sensitivity and expeditiously. To my mind the present problem affecting Indians is more the result of the failure of Indian leadership (read MIC) than racism.

Finally, it is incorrect to solely blame Umno for the problems that you've stated (no, I'm not an Umno member). The govt is BN, a coalition, and - I stand to be corrected by Sakmongkol here - there is a fair amount of horse trading when it comes to each party's (or race's) wants. Umno may shoulder more of the blame but the blame is shared by MCA, MIC, PGRM et al nonetheless.

walla 1 October 2008 at 22:21  

a tabib,

Thank you for the research; i will stand myself corrected on the points that you've stressed.

Just that i think what i had written reflects the general sentiments of a fair number of the people who see things from the other side. And while it may be true that PJ has a high density of churches, that should only be so proportion to the demand for christian places of worship. Ergo, there isn't enough administration at the moment to provide ease of approval in accordance with demand. I believe the counter-argument of Shah Alam has been elsewhere mentioned. Having said that, i would however concede that Shah Alam may be a special case, in recognition of the Mosque therein.

And i think that's the way forward - a certain sentiment of mutual respect strengthened by trust that administration will be fair and sensitive to different faiths and the two elements putting to final end the need for horse-trading just to justify the roles of different race-based parties. It's needless, and in today's liberal purview, it is harmful.

It remains for one to wonder why the research you've mentioned hasn't be used before, if i am not mistaken, in the media whenever such issues are reported. One can only conclude that there's an undercurrent of fear that if facts be told, other issues will surface.

But how did we get to this situation where we fear our own shadows as a society that is meant to have progressed after so many years of mutual sacrifice and nation-building?

So it's not just about places of worship.

Ariff Sabri 2 October 2008 at 09:43  

the selangor govt must now offer an alternative site for the hindus to build a temple/shrine or whatever. the curious thing is the temple has existed for 19 years. its built on a forest reserve- that should have invited action a long time ago. that it could exist for that long period can only suggest that many people, in the municipal council, the land office and the district forestry dept all have done a moshe dayan-eye on the temple. a wrong was not not corrected there and then. perhaps many palms were greased.
furthermore, what is the status of the land? was it a TOL? if it was, then no permanent buildings can be constructed. if the temple has been there for 19 years, then the settlement officers who go round on the ground have done nothing for the last 19 years.

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