PAS leaders play down Youth chief’s Valentine’s threat

(The Malaysian Insider) – Selangor PAS leaders distanced themselves today from party Youth chief Nasrudin Hasan’s declaration that Pakatan Rakyat (PR) states would launch crackdowns on Muslims celebrating Valentine’s Day.

The announcement has been widely criticised by civil groups and denounced by Barisan Nasional (BN) politicians as proof that PAS would implement a puritanical Islamic state if PR comes to power.

Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad said Nasrudin had not been authorised to speak on behalf of the state governments, and pointed out that enforcement of Islamic laws were carried out independently by religious departments.

“He does not represent the government,” said Khalid, who is also a member of the PAS national political bureau.

“The state religious department regularly conducts checks on immoral activities, not just on Valentine’s Day,” the first-term MP told reporters.

Khalid also confirmed that Nasrudin’s remarks were personal views and had not been brought up during the party’s recent political bureau meeting.

Nasrudin had reportedly said that the state governments in Kedah, Kelantan and Selangor had directed the local authorities to work closely with the police and Rela to check on immoral activities that day.

He said that in Penang, PAS Youth would work with the state Islamic department to monitor the celebration of Valentine’s Day.

He was quoted as saying that the programme was part of an attempt to promote sin-free lifestyles among the public.