Hindraf Makkal Sakthi urged Malaysians not to give in to the proposed amendments to Act 355 as it has all the elements of hudud law which is “prejudiced against Muslims”.
The NGO urged lawmakers and other stakeholders to unite against the proposed amendments as it would open the floodgates.
Hindraf chairman, P. Waythamoorthy, said the proposed amendments to Act 355 were fundamentally flawed.
Waytha was making a final call to non-Muslims in particular to oppose proposed amendments to the Syariah Court (Criminal Jurisdiction Act 1965) (Act 355).
“The amendments – to enhance the power of the Shariah Court – would affect the Federal Constitution,” said Waytha. “The Federal Constitution is the supreme law of the land.”
The proposed amendments, he said, would affect the fundamentals in the Federal Constitution i.e. equal protection and treatment irrespective of race and religion.
The Hindraf chief feels that non-Muslims must come forward to speak for their Muslim brethren.
“Each of us are stakeholders,” he said. “We must ensure that basic liberty and rights for all, as enshrined in the Federal Constitution, was protected.”
He described the amendments to Act 355 as political maneuvering riding on certain beliefs attributed to religion.
“The Muslims must have the same rights in law as non-Muslims,” said Waytha. “That was the intention of the founding fathers and framers of the Federal Constitution.
Basically, said Waytha, the proposed amendments were politically-motivated and would create a two tier system for punishment, totally unfair to Muslims, and doesn’t deliver equality and justice.
He questioned the rationale behind according vast sentencing powers to the Shariah Court.