Protesters fined for displaying cow head in Malaysia

July 27th, 2010 - 6:48 pm ICT by IANS  

Kuala Lumpur, July 27 (IANS) A Malaysian court Tuesday slapped a fine of $313 each on 12 people for displaying a cow head while protesting the shifting of a Hindu temple in August last year.
They were fined RM 1,000 ($313) each or a month’s jail for default for engaging in an illegal assembly.

Two of them who took the lead in the protest that the authorities termed illegal, were charged with sedition and also fined RM 3,000 ($940), Star Online reported. One of the two was also ordered to serve a week in jail.

The 12 protesters were part of a group that brought a cow’s head to the gate of the State Secretariat building - protesting the relocation of a 150-year-old Sri Maha Mariamman Hindu temple from the city’s Section 19 locality to their neighbourhood in Section 23.

They were all earlier charged under the Sedition Act 1948.

Cow is a sacred animal to the Hindus who form a bulk of the 1.7 million ethnic Indians in multi-racial Malaysia. They settled here during the British era and worship in thousands of temples.

The display of cow head, considered a provocative act, was widely condemned by the prime minister and his colleagues who ordered the relevant authorities to take prompt action.

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