IPOH: A message on social media stating that Ipoh police prevented Hindus from holding religious activities in conjunction with the Buntong Idugathu Kaliamman festival is not true.
Ipoh district police chief Yahaya Hassan said the content of the message, which went viral via WhatsApp, was defamatory and malicious with the aim of undermining the credibility of the police.
“Ipoh police respect every individual’s right to carry out religious activities as enshrined in the Federal Constitution and have never prevented anyone from holding a religious prayer ceremony.
“In this matter, we only gave advice and asked for cooperation from the temple to postpone the chariot and kavadi parade on April 21 to 23 as it clashes with the Hari Raya celebration,” he said in a statement today.
Yahaya said that if not postponed, the planned parade would cause traffic congestion and pose a risk to public safety in the nearby area.
However, he said police had no problem with religious activities in the temple area, adding that the matter had already been explained to the organiser.
Yahaya said the organiser had also denied being involved in spreading any false or defamatory messages.
As such, he advised the public not to be misled by the baseless accusation and to refrain from speculating on the content of the viral WhatsApp message.
“The police will take stern action against any irresponsible party who spreads the message under Section 505(b) of the Penal Code and Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA) 1998,” he said.