KUALA LUMPUR, March 18 ― The police questioned today three people about a recent Women’s Day march that was widely slammed because of protesters’ call for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights.
Datuk Gurdial Singh Nijar, who represented one of the unidentified trio, insisted that organisers of the march in Kuala Lumpur on March 9 had complied with the 10-day rule under Section 9(1) of the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 to notify authorities about the rally.
“The organisers submitted the proper (permit application) form on (February) 26th, the march was on (March) 9th,” Gurdial told reporters at the Dang Wangi district police headquarters here today.
Organisers of the International Women’s Day march previously said they were under investigation for sedition and illegal assembly.
Gurdial said today that the police were helpful in assisting and facilitating a peaceful demonstration on March 9.
The police also had no issue with the organisers and demonstration after the event, he claimed.
“Subsequent to that, some voices were raised and this is where we say the present government should not try to engender this unity in a women population that is so united,” Gurdial said.
Gurdial, who is also National Human Rights Society (Hakam) president, urged the government not to fuel attempts to curtail people’s rights based on the views of small sectors of society.
“Hakam wants to register its very strong protest against the continuance of the repressive policies of the past government,” Gurdial said.
While acknowledging that the police were cordial, Gurdial pointed out that people would still have to come to a police station to exert their rights.
He said Hakam will be taking up the issue with the relevant authorities.
* A previous version of this story contained an error which has since been corrected.