G25 takes Home Ministry to court for banning its moderate Islamic book

According to G25, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi signed the ban on June 14 this year and it was subsequently gazetted on July 27. ― Foto Bernama
According to G25, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi signed the ban on June 14 this year and it was subsequently gazetted on July 27. ― Foto Bernama

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KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 16 ― Pro-moderation group G25 which published Breaking The Silences: Voices of Moderation ― Islam In A Constitutional Democracy book  has filed for a judicial review to quash the Home Ministry’s ban on its book.

In a statement, G25 said the application was filed at the High Court here last Friday as a last resort after it failed to meet with the home minister for an explanation despite intercession from former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi who had also penned the foreward to its book.

“We are still baffled as to why the book was banned, having been kept in the dark on the grounds for the ban and the parts which are deemed ‘prejudicial to public order and cause alarm to public opinion’.

“This is especially when the purpose of the book is merely to explore the concept of moderation in Islam, in the context of Malaysia as a constitutional democracy with a national aspiration to be a fully developed country and a model for the Muslim world,” it said.

The book is a collection of essays whose publication was organised by a group of prominent Muslim Malaysians pushing a more tolerant form of Islam.

According to G25, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi signed the ban on June 14 this year and it was subsequently gazetted on July 27.

This, the group said, came 19 months after the book was launched on December 5, 2015 by prominent Umno leader Tan Sri Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.

Activists and authors have previously reacted with outrage over the ban, questioning Putrajaya’s purpose of doing so.

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