Malaysian town council prevents Muslims from watching non-Muslim Taoist temple concert

July 19th, 2008 - 4:30 pm ICT by ANI  

Kuala Lumpur, July 19 (ANI): A concert held at a small Taoist temple to mark the “Birthday of The Gods” in the Malaysian town of Pasir Mas turned ugly when the organisers of the event were told that the shows were only to be watched by non-Muslims.
District council authorities cracked down on the organisers after they were informed that some Muslim men and women had been seen in the audience on Tuesday, the first night of the two-day concert with male and female artistes.
According to The Star, the council sent its officers to prevent Muslims from watching the shows and told the organisers to put up a curtain to block the view of passers-by.
The council claimed that the organisers had flouted existing guidelines by allowing Muslims to view performances by female artistes, some of whom were “sexily” dressed.
Local Government Committee Chairman Takiyuddin Hassan said the guidelines on outdoor performances clearly stated that female artistes were barred from performing. He said that although the concert was within the temple compound, it was held in an open space where others could watch.
State Gerakan Chairman Ng Chiang Chin, whose house is in front of the temple, said it was the second time that a religious celebration at a temple was disrupted.
The event was held with an outdoor community concert organised by members of the Tao Tin Hu Keng Association.
Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA) vice-president Donald Lim Siang Chai was quoted by the paper as saying that some people would interpret the action of the district council as distasteful, as it was only a two-day religious festival. He claimed that many such events were held at temples previously and no action were taken by the authorities. (ANI)

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