RM1,000 cow-head fines a warning, says Hindu Sangam

KUALA LUMPUR, July 27 — Hindu Sangam president Mohan Shanmugam described the fines imposed on the cow-head protestors today as “minimal” but still served as a warning to groups looking to stoke religious tension.

The Shah Alam sessions court had today slapped an RM1,000 fine on 12 men that were involved in the shocking cow-head protests last year.

Two men were also charged with sedition and fined another RM3,000 with one of the two also ordered to serve one week in jail.

“We welcome the justice,” he told The Malaysian Insider when contacted. “Although the charges are very minimal but it shows that everyone charged will be brought to justice. This is a warning for everybody.”

Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad however, had earlier expressed his dismay over the RM1,000 fines as he felt that the protests were politically motivated and the fines could easily be covered by political “sponsors”.

“No way is it going to be a deterrent,” said Khalid. “It sends a bad message and falls short of what people were expecting. The actions of the cow-head protestors were extreme and provocative.”

The 12 who were fined were part of a group which brought a cow’s head to the gate of the Selangor state secretariat building on August 28 last year to protest the construction of a temple in their mainly

Muslim-Malay neighbourhood in Shah Alam.

They were protesting the relocation of a 150-year-old Sri Maha Mariamman Hindu temple from Section 19 to their neighbourhood in Section 23.

Eyzva Ezhar Ramly, 31, was charged under the Section 4(1)(a) of the Sedition Act 1948 for “inciting racial animosity with carrying a cow-head”  along with the other accused, Mohd Azmir Mohd Zain.

Eyzva will only begin serving his one week prison sentence on August 4 as he is currently in prison for another unrelated offence.