PETALING JAYA: Perlis Mufti Datuk Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin said the controversial Friday poem on “cow worshippers” that was posted on his Facebook page was not intended to insult local Hindus.
“People have asked why the poem mentioned the term ‘cow worshipping’.
“The answer is because the poem was referring to (Narendra) Modi’s government that allows Muslims to be cruelly killed daily just because they eat beef,” he said in his latest posting yesterday.
He said there were plenty of videos and articles online depicting the violence propagated by these groups in India merely because they worship the cow and consider it sacred.
“They are willing to kill their fellow human beings just because of an animal that is consumed widely around the world,” he wrote.
Dr Asri, popularly known as Dr Maza, said Hindus in this country should not feel offended as they do not worship cows.
“I believe there are many educated people in this country who do not worship cows or consider it sacred, especially to the extent of killing another human being because of it,” he said.
The prominent religious scholar added that those with common sense would reject such beliefs, just as they would reject the labelling of certain castes in India as “pariah”.
He said the term “pariah” and the caste system did not exist here because Malaysians believed in equality for all.
“This matter has nothing to do with the people here, who could not possibly believe in such nonsense,” he added.
Dr Asri’s poem, which was written in Malay, drew strong reactions from the public after it appeared to insult the Hindu community.
The poem was believed to be in response to the criticism of controversial Muslim preacher Dr Zakir Naik, who is wanted in India for allegedly inspiring terrorist activities through his preaching.
Dr Zakir’s Islamic Research Foundation has also been declared an unlawful organisation by the Indian government.
On Tuesday, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi confirmed that Dr Zakir had been granted permanent resident status in Malaysia some five years ago.