Fellow students present at flogging, says victim


  • Nation
  • Friday, 14 Mar 2003

BY SYED AZHAR

KOTA BARU: Religious school student Mohd Asrul Ahmad has claimed that over 10 fellow students were present when he was flogged 25 times by two men in his school, but none lifted a finger to help him. 

The 17-year-old student said that before he was caned on Monday by the two religious college students, they read out charges similar to those faced by Muslims who had committed illicit sex. 

“I was punished for merely chatting with a girl at the school canteen and, in fact, the conversation took place in the presence of fellow students. 

CANING VICTIM: Mohd Asrul shows the welts on his back. He was held down and flogged 25 times for chatting with a girl at his school canteen.

“I have not committed any crime, and I am especially angry because those who were present did not do anything to stop the flogging,” he said in an interview at his home in Kampung Banggol Setol on Wednesday. 

He added that even if he was guilty of immoral activities, those who whipped him did not have the authority to do so. 

The student, who received treatment at the Pasir Mas Hospital, had welts on his back, thighs, knees and buttocks. 

Mohd Asrul said he was not able to move during the incident because his arms were stretched out and held firmly by two people. 

In addition, he said, while he was being flogged, those present were counting out the number of lashes in unison. 

“The canteen operator, who saw what was happening, pleaded with them to stop but was warned that he would meet with the same fate if he interfered,” said the Form Four student of SM Arab Khairiah Banggol Setol. 

On Tuesday, two men, aged 23 and 33, were arrested in connection with the case after Mohd Asrul lodged a police report the same day. 

The suspects were arrested in the boy’s kampung. 

Mohd Asrul’s father, Ahmad Zakaria, 52, said he was particularly upset over the incident because no one came to his son’s aid.  

“It happened in school and it is hard to believe that everyone stood still and did nothing,” he said. 

Ahmad said he would leave the matter to the police, adding that he would continue sending Mohd Asrul to the same school. 

Kelatan Umno liaison committee chairman Datuk Mustapha Mohamad said there was a possibility that such acts of fanaticism could set a precedent for others to take the law into their own hands.  

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