PETALING JAYA, Dec 29 — Terengganu police decided to take a spiritual approach by bringing 33 Mat Rempits who were caught for illegal racing to a prayer and counseling session at a mosque.
Local daily Sinar Harian reported that the 33 teenage Mat Rempits who were caught during an operation conducted by Kemaman police headquarters yesterday morning were taken to Masjid Sultan Ahmad in Chukai where they performed Subuh prayers and listened to a tazkirah from the mosque's imam.
This is the second time Kemaman police had taken a spiritual approach to curb the Mat Rempit menace in the state.
Sinar Harian reported that back in July, Kemaman police had taken 79 detained Mat Rempits to a mosque for prayers.
Kemaman police chief Supt Mohd Said Ibrahim said in the latest incident all 33 Mat Rempits were detained during an Ops Samseng Jalanan operation that started at 8pm last night and was only concluded at 5am this morning.
He told the Malay daily that the operation was focused at Kilometre 19 of Jalan Kuala Terengganu-Kuantan in Rantau which has been often used by the teenagers as their racing circuit.
“This is the second time we have taken the arrested illegal racers to the mosque as we feel we can educate them spiritually and make them realise that what they are doing is wrong.
“Such approach gives a deeper touch and can help them understand that illegal racing is against religious teaching as they are not only risking their own lives but also the lives of other road users,” he reportedly told the paper.
The Malay daily reported that after pictures of the teenagers performing prayers at the mosque following the detention made it to social media, many applauded police's move to use such a holistic approach.
Even Terengganu Mentri Besar Dr Ahmad Samsuri Mokhtar had come forward to praise the police's new action plan.
Mohd Said said that during the latest operation which also involved the narcotics and criminal investigation department, police had checked a total of 40 individuals, 37 vehicles were checked and 104 summonses was issued for various offences.