Resort owner arrested for allowing use of surau by Buddhists

(TMI) – The owner of the resort in Kota Tinggi who had allowed a group of Buddhists to meditate in a surau there has been remanded for four days.

The Star Online reported that Kota Tinggi Sessions Court registrar Hairul Azhar Mohamad issued the remand order today against the resort owner who is a Singaporean with Malaysian permanent resident status.

The 45-year-old man was arrested on Sunday afternoon at the Tanjung Sutera Resort and is currently being investigated under Section 295 of the Penal Code for defiling a place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class.

His arrest came after a YouTube video portrayed a group who looked like monks conducting religious prayers in a surau, leading a group in meditation in front of a portrait of Buddha.

The 63-second video called “Chinese Buddhist pray in surau: surau becomes temple” was uploaded on August 10 and has generated more than 10,000 views.

It was reported in Berita Harian yesterday that the resort owner  defended his action saying that he did not think the action of giving permission to believers of other religions to use the surau was wrong.

He was quoted as saying: “This is because they only wanted to use the surau for meditation.

“So we allowed them to use the surau in the resort but their bringing other religious items into the surau was done without my knowledge.”