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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Police to investigate Hari Raya dog video

The controversial video will be investigated, says police
PETALING JAYA: Police confirmed today they will investigate a controversial YouTube video depicting dog trainer Maznah Mohd Yusof washing her dogs and wishing viewers Selamat Hari Raya.
The video, which was uploaded three years ago, went viral on social media yesterday, sparking protests among many Malays, who perceive the video as “insulting” to Muslims.
Dang Wangi district police chief ACPT Zainuddin Ahmad told Astro Awani that the case was classified under Section 298 of the Penal Code, which relates to “uttering words, etc,. with deliberate intent to wound the religious feelings of any person.”
If found guilty, the offender faces between two to five years in prison.
Several Malay non-governmental organisations (NGO) lodged a police report against Maznah, also known as Chetz Yusof, after being “shocked and insulted” to discover the video on their Facebook timeline.
“I, who champion for Islam in this Muslim group, feel the individual has committed a grievous insult towards all Muslims in Malaysia,” reads the report that was lodged at the Dang Wangi police station at 11.27 am today.
“It is not right for the concept of ablution, a method for which Muslims clean themselves, to be equated with washing dogs’ legs. Clearly such an insult is akin to challenging the patience of Muslims, especially in this month of Ramadan.”
The report was lodged by Ruhizat Safie, from self-proclaimed Muslim NGO Pertubuhan Martabat Jalinan Muhibah Malaysia (MJMM), who urged the police to take “stern, drastic action” against Maznah.
The report was supported by other NGOS who claim to represent the majority of the Malays in the country, including Secretariat NGO Negeri Selangor, BATAS Malaysia, and Paduka Master Rock.
MJMM president Abdul Rani Abdullah called for the arrest of the video producers, stressing: “We are angry, insulted and sad. Dogs are dirty in Islam.”
Nevertheless, the Quran makes no mention of dogs being dirty in Islam or to Muslims.
On the contrary, according to ex-Perlis mufti Dr Mohd Asri Zainal Abidin, a person who cares for dogs is rewarded in Islam, and hunting dogs is also allowed by the religion.
Maznah has since clarified with the media that her intention was not to insult Muslims and Islam, but to remind them to celebrate Hari Raya with animals as well as humans.
“My religion has taught me about the importance of cleanliness. Hence this is why in the video, I am cleaning myself and my dogs,” she told Malaysiakini.
Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Jailani Johari has also directed the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) to take action on the video, as it could affect Muslim sensitivities.
The video, which lasts 1 minute and 44 seconds, shows Maznah strolling near a mosque with three dogs; whilst the ‘takbir raya’ playing in the background.
The video also shows her sharing Raya cookies with the dogs.
It broadcasts the words ‘Raikanlah Aidilfitri bersama-sama, tanpa mengira spesis, warna, asal- usul’ (Celebrate Aidilfitri together irrespective of species, colour and origin) while featuring a shot of the three dogs.

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