KUALA LUMPUR, June 14:
Hours after disagreeing with the Attorney-General that the seized Bibles should be returned to the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM), the Selangor religious authority is now using Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail’s name to dispose of the holy books. More than 300 copies of the Malay and Iban Bibles were seized in January as it contained the word “Allah”, which the courts had deemed to be exclusively for Muslims. In a statement, Selangor Islamic Religious Council (MAIS) chairman Datuk Mohamad Adzib Mohd Isa said it would now adhere to the Criminal Procedure Code, which stipulates that items confiscated for investigations can be disposed of.
That is in line with the A-G’s orders for “case items” to be “disposed” of in accordance with the law, it added. The application must be filed by the Deputy Public Prosecutor. “The Selangor Islamic Religious Department is requesting that the DPP refer the matter to the court, in accordance with the law.” He added that the people should let the courts decide if the Bibles should be returned or disposed of. Earlier today, MAIS had stated that it would not return the Bibles as it disagreed with the Attorney-General’s Chambers’ decision not to proceed with the prosecution. The council also disagreed with the A-G Chamber’s views that the Bible was a collection of books from the Torah, Zabur (Psalms) and Injil (Bible) whereas the “Berita Baik” referred to the Bible. On Wednesday, Abdul Gani had said there would be no charges in the case.