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Temple site dispute: Let the compassion and kindness of Islam prevail

Many hope that the magnanimity of Muslims will ultimately reign

DR WONG SOAK KOON/ALIRAN

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The Na Tok Kong Temple in Taman Sri Kuching has filed an affidavit claiming that its house of worship was established since 1996, when the plot of land it is sitting on was owned by the Kuala Lumpur City Hall.

Its defence comes in the wake of an eviction suit by the Federal Territories Islamic Council. [The Islamic council had reportedly made a request for the land in 1998 with the director of Lands and Mines of the Federal Territories. Temporary ownership was awarded to the council in 2000, and this was converted to full ownership four years later.]

While the matter should be left to the courts to resolve, many hope that the magnanimity of Muslims will ultimately reign, overriding the legal issues. 

On quiet reflection, many may wonder if the Islamic council is short of land to build new places of worship. 

After all, statistically, Islam, being the nation’s official religion, enjoys the privilege, given its numerous places of worship and the budget allocations, compared to all other religions in our multi-religious nation. 

Places of worship, irrespective of creed, play an important role in nation-building, serving as an oasis for social values. Such values are crucial for the creation of a progressive, harmonious society. 

Hence, we can empathise with and understand the degree of loss if an eviction and demolition exercise is carried out on this place of worship. 

If we want the Madani socio-political and economic architecture (which has its roots in Islam) to succeed for all the people of Malaysia, then we must embrace without reservations the six core fundamentals, namely sustainability, compassion, respect, innovation, progress and trust. 

READ MORE:  Anwar, the Israel-Hamas 'war' should not be seen through religious lens

We hope, irrespective of our faiths, that compassion, respect and trust will prevail in resolving this issue over the Na Tok Kong Temple.

The views expressed in Aliran's media statements and the NGO statements we have endorsed reflect Aliran's official stand. Views and opinions expressed in other pieces published here do not necessarily reflect Aliran's official position.

AGENDA RAKYAT - Lima perkara utama
  1. Tegakkan maruah serta kualiti kehidupan rakyat
  2. Galakkan pembangunan saksama, lestari serta tangani krisis alam sekitar
  3. Raikan kerencaman dan keterangkuman
  4. Selamatkan demokrasi dan angkatkan keluhuran undang-undang
  5. Lawan rasuah dan kronisme
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