PETALING JAYA: The Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) has defended its handling of khalwat (close proximity) cases and rejected the views of the G25 on the matter.
“I don’t want to comment. His book is different from mine. We don’t read the same holy book, how can we agree,” Jais director Haris Kasim told FMT when commenting on Mohd Sheriff Kassim’s remarks on khalwat raids.
Sheriff is adviser to the G25, a movement comprising 25 eminent Malay moderates.
Earlier today, Sheriff said that Arab states did not conduct khalwat raids which infringed upon the privacy of a person in his home or hotel room.
Sheriff said even authorities in Saudi Arabia – home to Islam’s holiest site – had issued stern guidelines to limit the powers of the moral police when it came to harassing and arresting Muslims.
Meanwhile, in a statement, Malay rights group Perkasa lashed out at Sheriff and cast doubt on his claims about there being less moral policing in Arab states in relation to khalwat.
The group said just because Malays in Arab states were not subject to khalwat raids, it did not mean Jais’s actions should be rejected.
“We also want to know which ulama said khalwat raids were un-Islamic as claimed by Sheriff. Please clarify this.”
“The actions of the religious authorities are not aimed at punishing, but preventing (social ills).”
Perkasa also called on Sheriff to prove his claim that those who were rich and powerful could “get away with bigger sins” as the religious authorities carried out their duties without fear or favour.
The group hit out at Sheriff’s claim that khalwat laws could be exploited by vengeful parties who sought to “settle a score” with a fellow Muslim.
“We urge G25 to be more careful when making statements. Think before you speak.” -FMT