Muslim duty to assist the victim of alleged harassment

Harakahdaily | .

While a bit belated we have to consider the manner in which the authorities have been handling the peoples’ protest over the implementation of GST.

On 1st May, a large scale protest was held in the capital city against GST, the date also coinciding with Workers’ Day. In fact since all workers are affected by this oppressive tax, it was surely timely for the people to come out in force to get their voices heard.

And as usual in this strange country of ours, the political bulletins that masquerade as ‘the media’ just left out the reporting of the event except to highlight that ‘trouble makers’ went out to the streets. Ironically these same bulletins reported on the massive demonstrations held in cities around the world where people had come out to air their grouses against some issue or other that affected them. Much coverage was given to these events but our own peoples’ protest was left out. Instead the usual propaganda which all political bulletins are famous for was there. One clear example was that reporting of the arrest of former Bersih head, Datuk Ambiga over the May Day Rally.

What is more disturbing from this is the allegation of sexual harassment on the part of the police against one of the protestors who was detained and brought in for questioning. In her own words she has accused a police officer of threatening to rape her and recording the incident on video and later on threatening to sell it. What is becoming to this country?

How could an officer (was he a Muslim?) do such a thing? If he were a Muslim it only makes it worse – it sacrileges his faith.

After so many days no proper investigation has been set up. The Home minister as yet has to make a definitive statement on the issue. The IGP appears to be silent as well. Where are the Malay and Muslim NGOs? Where are the muftis? Later, we learn that KL police have started investigations.

This is a very serious issue indeed. Can anyone of us who are fathers and mothers tolerate their daughter to be intimidated sexually in this manner? The girl who was harassed could be our own daughter or sister. Can we choose to remain silent?

And what of our own party, whose deputy president was leading the May Day Rally? Should not PAS set up a committee to assist the girl to attain justice? Is this issue ‘too small’ and there are ‘other concerns’ like ‘hudud’ to take care of, that it may well be discarded?

It is a shame that all the so-called parties and organizations claiming to champion Islam can remain so silent on the plight of one woman participant of a just cause. Had she opted to stay away she may not have been harassed in this manner, but as a person with conscience and who felt that she had to come to get her voice heard, she had to face this ignominy.

Now will PAS come forward to help Maisara Amira, the harassed victim? Can a similar committee be set up as in the Tabung Haji fiasco to help not just Maisara but others too who may be in the future face a similar situation?

We wait for concrete action.

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