By SIRA HABIBU
PETALING JAYA: Those responsible for bringing the head of a cow during the Aug 28 protest at the Selangor state secretariat building should be charged in court, said Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein.
He ordered the police to proceed with further investigation and take stern action against those responsible.
“The police have identified the individuals involved," he said in a statement Thursday.
Affected residents had staged a protest last Friday against the Pakatan Rakyat-led Selangor government’s decision to relocate a 150-year-old temple from Section 19 to Section 23 in Shah Alam.
The protest sparked controversy when some of the participants brought along the decapitated head of a cow, then stamped and spat on it. Hindus consider the cow a sacred animal.
One of the protest leaders also threatened bloodshed if the Selangor government went ahead with its plans to relocate the temple.
Although the residents were angry with the state government and had no intention of hurting the feeling of any other race, Hishammuddin said such action could not be tolerated.
“The Home Ministry view seriously all issues that could undermine the harmony, unity, national security and stability of this multiracial country,’’ he said.
The Malaysia Bar Council, in a statement, expressed disappointment at Federal Government leaders who made irresponsible statements including blaming the Selangor government over the temple relocation issue.
“The fact that this is a Muslim-majority area is immaterial and should not, in and of itself, be permitted to serve as adequate basis for rejecting the establishment of a place of worship of any faith,” said Bar Council president Ragunath Kesavan.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had said that the police and Attorney-General’s Chambers would decide whether the protestors had violated any laws under the Sedition Act.
The Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan had also said police had identified the main culprits involved and the Attorney-General had directed further investigations. - The Star