DAP: Cops must act over slapping incident in viral video

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GEORGE TOWN: A Penang DAP leader today lodged a police report over the incident of a man slapping a woman apparently for not wearing a headscarf.

A video of the incident has since gone viral on social media.

Penang DAP assistant publicity secretary Syerleena Abdul Rashid lodged the report at the northeast district police headquarters today and urged police to take action against the man in the video.

Syerleena, who is also Penang Island City councillor, said the video was brought to her attention after it was published by Britain’s Daily Mail on January 11.

In condemning the act, she said physical harm should never be inflicted on anyone as violence had no place in society.

“Present day society has other means to convey grouses or concerns that might arise.

“According to the police, no one has lodged any police reports thus far, hence, I have decided to lodge a report and hope that the relevant authorities will be able to carry out a thorough investigation,” she told reporters here today.

Syerleena said the “random act of violence” was not as random as one might think and the incident should not be taken lightly.

Pointing out that it was a cause for concern, she said the incident was proof that it was solely targeted against women who were perceived to be different than what was now considered to be a norm.

Bukit Gelugor MP Ramkarpal Singh, who was also present at the district police headquarters this morning, said investigations into the incident ought to have started even if no police reports were lodged.

“Police could have lodged their own report, and begun formal investigations into the case. There is no excuse for them not to do so.

“For instance, if someone is murdered on the street, if nobody saw it and no reports are lodged, it would be crazy to say the murder will not be investigated. You have to investigate it,” he said.

Ramkarpal, who is a lawyer, urged police to investigate the matter to determine the identities of both the assailant and the victim.

“No matter what the motive is for committing the act, police should get to the bottom of this and charge the person involved,” he said.

Channel News Asia recently reported that a footage of a man in Malaysia slapping a woman for not wearing a headscarf had sparked outrage, with netizens expressing concern that the incident would tarnish the image of the country and Islam.

The incident was said to have taken place in Penang, and was recorded in a six-minute video that was posted online on January 5.

In the video, the man is seen talking loudly to a few women sitting at a bus stop, asking if they were Muslims.

He then singled out one of the women and demanded to know why she was not wearing a headscarf.

After the woman replied that it was a personal decision, the man slapped her across the face.