IGP should apologise to Siti Kasim, says Hindraf

Hindraf chairman P Waythamoorthy says there was no need for police to have acted with such aggression.

PETALING JAYA: Rights group Hindraf says the Inspector-General of Police should apologise to lawyer and activist Siti Kasim for abusing her fundamental human rights and destruction of her personal properties.

Its chairman P Waythamoorthy said the police had trespassed into Siti’s home and took her client by force to the police station.

He said although the police had stated that their action was in accordance with Section 363 and 186 of the Penal Code, which was related to kidnapping a person from Malaysia or from lawful guardianship, the alleged “victim”, an adult, had clearly stated that she was not kidnapped.

The “victim” had also claimed to have left the Kajang Hospital on her own volition to her lawyer’s residence to avoid the abuse by her mother, Waytha said.

“The police could have easily communicated with Siti in relation to the alleged kidnapping without the need to show such aggression and abuse of power towards Siti and the alleged kidnapped person.

“Thereafter your police force tried to obtain a remand order against Siti under Section 186 without even investigating the matter in detail,” Waytha said in an open letter to IGP Mohamad Fuzi Harun.

Waytha said with the new government in place, those in authority should not persist with arbitrary, unjust and impunity acts that grossly abuse and undermine the basic liberty and freedom of a Malaysian citizen.

“Imagine the state and predicament of an ordinary citizen in Malaysia when such a cavalier fashion by the police force is forced even upon a renowned human rights lawyer like Siti.

“In essence, the police force as an independent executive arm and the bulwark of the country’s security should shield and be the face of human rights of our citizens, as opposed to being the face of intimidation, abuse and suppression of citizens’ basic liberties and rights.

“Hindraf views this gross injustice and continuity of such practices with grave concern. We urge the IGP to immediately act to remedy such abuses of power,” Waytha added.

Earlier, Siti heaped scorn on claims by the police that they had rescued her client.

In a video uploaded on Facebook, she said she had no reason to kidnap her client.

“Why would I want to kidnap her? For what? Did I send out a ransom note?” she asked.

She said she hoped the home minister would look into the police’s actions which she described as “high-handed”, so that there would be no repeat of such incidents in the “new Malaysia”.

It is understood that Siti’s client, a woman in her 20s, was picked up by police after a complaint lodged by her mother claiming that her daughter’s faith was in question.

Siti earlier said that the woman, whom she claimed was abused by the mother, had been “abducted” by the police and Islamic authorities in Selangor.

A video posted on Facebook showed Siti at the police station, demanding that her client be freed. A woman was also heard from another room, denying that she had been kidnapped by Siti.

Siti was arrested at the Kajang police headquarters on Saturday and released On Sunday following the court’s dismissal of an application for her remand.

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