"Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation." - Federal Constitution, Article 3(1)
As many as 101 of the 128 Shiite followers who have been detained by the Selangor Islamic Affairs Department (Jais) have had their statements recorded over suspicions of being involved with the banned mazhab (school of thought).
According to a Jais insider, those detained had started giving their statements since being detained last week and will continue to do so until Thursday when the process of recording their statement ends.
They are being investigated under Section 12 (c) of the Selangor Syariah Crimes Enactment 1995, which pertains to committing contempt against the religious authorities.
Section 12 (c) pertains to acting "in a way yang menghina kuasa yang sah (that is in contempt of the rightful authorities), or defies, violates or questions an order or directive of ... the mufti stated or issued through a fatwa."
A Selangor fatwa proscribes being involved in, learning or propogating Shiite teachings.
Those found guilty of an offence for which they have been charged can be fined up to RM3,000, jailed up to two years, or both.
“They were undergoing collective studies (of Shiite teachings). The way we see it, if the lessons were undertaken individually, there would be no problem as we would not be aware of it. But it was done in groups,” the source told Malaysiakini when contacted.
Last Wednesday, scores of Shiites - local and foreigners - were rounded up by Jais during a raid on a shoplot in Taman Seri Gombak, Batu Caves.
Among those reportedly detained were lecturers, university students lawyers and civil servants.
According to the source, two of the 128 persons detained were brought to the Kuang Lower Syariah Court on Dec 16.
Other than being charged under Section 12 (c), the two individuals also face being charged under Section 7(1) and Section 13 of the same enactment.
Section 7(1) relates to the teaching, 'clarification' or performance of any rites or actions relating to Islam, whether on private or public property.
Committing an offense under the provision can lead to a fine of up to RM3,000, jail of not more than three years, caning of up to six strokes, or a combination of the above.
Section 13, meanwhile, pertains to relating, propagating or spreading views on any issue, teaching or syariah judgement that goes against fatwas already in force in Selangor.
Those found guilty of breaching Section 13 can be liable to a fine of not more than RM3,000, prison of up to two years, or both.
The case has been set for second mention on Jan 20 next year.
As many as 126 Shiites are expected to be brought to court the following March 24.- Malaysiakini, 21/12/2010, 128 'Shiites' arrested, 100 under questioning
A GROUP of 200 Shi’ite followers have been arrested by the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais), reported Utusan Malaysia.
The arrests were made during a raid at the fourth floor of a shophouse in Taman Sri Gombak, Batu Caves in Selangor on Thursday.
Among those arrested in the 10.15pm raid were 75 men and 35 women – locals, Indonesians, Myanmars and Pakistanis – were nabbed. The rest were children.
Also held were the congregation’s two leaders, one of them an Iranian.
Dozens of other members climbed out of windows to avoid being arrested.
Members of the group, which called itself Hauzah Ar Ridha Alaihissalam, included lecturers, students of higher learning institutions, lawyers and government employees.
Jais director Datuk Muhammad Khusrin Munawi called the group “fanatics and a threat to national security” whose members were led to believe that other Islamic sects were infidels.
Muhammad Khusrin said the arrests were the largest of its kind of deviant groups in the country.
He added that the department believed similar cells were active in other states.
Shi’ite teachings are outlawed under the Administration of Islamic Law Enactment 1989 for deviating from Sunni Islam views of aqidah and syariah. - Star, 18/12/2010, Group of 200 Shi’ite followers held in raid