PETALING JAYA: PAS has lambasted Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad for saying that the caning of two women convicted of attempting to commit a sexual act gives a bad impression of Islam.
PAS secretary-general Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan (pic) said that the caning was in accordance with syariah laws for hudud and takzir cases.
"In takzir punishments, the discretion is with the syariah judge.
"As long as the punishment is within the scope of the law and does not prejudice the rights of the accused, it is not only valid but also fulfils the humanity and democratic criteria after undergoing a valid, transparent and open process," said Takiyuddin in a statement on Friday.
He said that in the case of the two women who pleaded guilty to attempting to have same-sex relations, the syariah court sentencing them to not more than six strokes of the cane, as provided for under Section 2 of the Syariah Courts Act (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 or Act 355 which was amended in 1984, and can be implemented at all syariah courts nationwide.
Takiyuddin added that to implement the caning punishment in public in a courtroom was not something foreign nor needed to be turned into polemic.
In the past, he said caning punishments have been meted out, especially for cases involving teenagers and juveniles.
"Although Syariah law is under the jurisdiction of the state government, it does not mean its importance and credibility is lower than federal government laws.
"As such, PAS hopes that everyone, especially the Pakatan Harapan government, respects and abides by the decision and not try to confuse the public," said Takiyuddin.
On Thursday, Dr Mahathir said the Cabinet had discussed the case and opined that it did not reflect the quality of justice and compassion of Islam.
The punishment on the two, aged 32 and 22, in Terengganu, has also drawn mixed reactions from the public, human rights groups and politicians.
Did you find this article insightful?