KUCHING: The State Islamic Affairs Department (JAIS) will hold a discussion with the caretaker of a Chinese temple in Pending here on the placement of the Quran at the shrine of a Malay deity in its premises.
Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Office (Islamic Affairs Department) Datuk Daud Abdul Rahman, said officers from JAIS had been instructed not to act harshly during the discussion.
“Officers from JAIS will visit the temple and discuss with the caretaker of the temple to remove the Quran and other elements related to Islam from the altar of the deity.”
Daud added that the officers would persuade the temple officials to remove the Quran rather than seize from them.
“We will be having discussion without being harsh and neither will we seize the Quran,” Daud said in his text message.
He said this when asked on a report that Pertubuhan Peradaban dan Warisan Merlayu (Adab) Sarawak had lodged a police report claiming that the temple had placed a Muslim prayer mat and al-Quran at the altar of the deity.
Daud believed that there were other temples in the state also incorporating elements of Islam in their worship of some deities.
He added that JAIS had also previously visited a temple in the city that placed the Quran at one of its altars and the caretaker had willingly taken it down after being advised by department’s officers.
The assistant minister urged Muslims in the state not to overreact on the issue and let JAIS handle the situation to allow for an amicable solution.