Burning bibles more ‘dignified’ than throwing them, minister explains


(MM) – Islam prescribes burning as a more dignified way to dispose of a holy item, Umno minister Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan said today as he clarified his defence of Datuk Ibrahim Ali’s suggestion to torch bibles earlier this year.

Abdul Rahman pointed out here that simply chucking the books into a dustbin was akin to desecrating the holy scriptures unlike a private burning, which he described as more “respectful”.

“But absolutely… if any Muslim or any person goes around forcefully confiscating bibles from Christians, piling them up in the middle of town and then burning it… then he should of course be served a jail sentence.

“There is no question about that,” he told The Malay Mail Online.

Abdul Rahman found himself the target of criticisms from opposition leaders today over his recent defence of Ibrahim, the Malay rights leader who created a storm of controversy earlier this year when he suggested burning Malay-language bibles using the word “Allah”.

The Kota Belud MP allegedly defended Ibrahim’s call on Thursday when he was asked to comment on criticisms against the swift prosecution of sex blogger duo Alvin Tan and Vivian Lee and the authorities’ alleged refusal to charge other prominent leaders like Ibrahim for similarly racist actions.

In his response, Abdul Rahman had said both cases were like comparing apples and oranges, despite their racial nature.

He explained that Perkasa chief Ibrahim had only suggested burning the holy books as they were misprinted to include “Allah”, the word in the centre of a protracted legal dispute between Muslims and Christians here.

“Ibrahim Ali had said if the book contains the word ‘Allah’, then it is a misprint. So he said people would have two choices if they were given the book, either to throw it away or to burn it.

“Burning it your backyard in a dignified manner… Muslims do that all the time. It is prescribed in our religion that the most dignified way of disposing old or misprinted Qurans is not by throwing them into the dustbin or a dumpsite.

“You burn them… because apart from that misprint, the rest of the book still has holy verses,” he told The Malay Mail Online this afternoon.

Read more at: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/burning-bibles-more-dignified-than-throwing-them-minister-explains