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Selangor Islamic Religious Dept will not oppose holding Bon Odori

Selangor Islamic Religious Dept will not oppose holding Bon Odori

SHAH ALAM: The Selangor Islamic Religious Department (JAIS) would not prevent any individual from attending the Bon Odori event, scheduled for July 16 at the Shah Alam National Sports Complex (Panasonic), said its director Datuk Mohd Shahzihan Ahmad.

In a statement today, he said the decision was made following a command by the Sultan of Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah who did not consent to any decision on the matter, which was made hastily, without a study done and due consideration.

“His Royal Highness is of the opinion that many cultures are linked to religion but religion need not necessarily be present in a culture. The Sultan also stated that practising something is different from viewing it.

“His Royal Highness is also not worried because if the faith of Muslims is strong and true, they will not be convinced of or practise anything that is contrary to the creed of Ahlul Sunnah wal Jama’ah,” he said.

Mohd Shahzihan said the Selangor Sultan also ordered that all matters be decided upon with fairness and impartiality in a multiracial and multireligious society like in Selangor.

“In this regard, His Royal Highness has ordered JAIS and the Shah Alam City Council officials to attend the (Bon Odori) event to see for themselves what takes place at the event.

“The Sultan himself had attended the event some years ago and did not see anything which could erode the faith of Muslims. It is a social programme for industry workers of many Japanese companies that operate in Selangor,” he added.

Meanwhile, in KUALA LUMPUR, Alumni of Look East Policy Society (ALEPS) president, Zulfiqat Zainuddin said the annual Bon Odori festival is an activity promoting Japanese culture in Malaysia and has no element of Buddhism.

He said ALEPS had been helping the main organiser, namely, the Japan Club Kuala Lumpur (JCKL), to promote the event to the public in this country.

“From the views and explanations of the Japanese Embassy and the main organiser, we use the Bon Odori festival as a platform to introduce Japanese culture to Malaysians,” he said when contacted by Bernama, today. – Bernama