Arrested for blocking demolition of graves, businessman claims ownership of govt land in Batu Kawan

According to the police, the man had claimed he had a right to build graves on the site because the land belonged to him. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
According to the police, the man had claimed he had a right to build graves on the site because the land belonged to him. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

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BATU KAWAN, Sept 6 — A 55-year-old businessman was arrested by the police on Wednesday for trying to obstruct demolition work on gravesite structures on a plot of state-owned land, which he claimed belonged to him in Bandar Cassia here.

South Seberang Perai District Police chief, Supt Shafee Abdul Samad said that in the 10am incident, personnel from the Penang state Land and Mines Department, together with officers  from other government departments, agencies and the Seberang Perai Municipal Council (MPSP), had carried out demolition work at the site on which a store was also located.

Also present were state law enforcement personnel, he told Bernama.

“The 55-year-old businessman suddenly appeared at the site claiming that the land belonged to him shouting that the demolition work should stop,” said Shafee.

The man then dashed towards the chain excavator with a red brick in his hand which he wanted to hurl at the driver but he was able to save himself in the nick of time, while the police quickly apprehended the man.

Shafee said investigations by the State Land and Mines office found that the plot of land was owned by the Penang state government.

He added that the man was present during an inspection of the site on August 25, and had managed to drive out officers and enforcement authorities who were present at the time.

The suspect, who is now under remand, claimed that the 10 gravesites and a Chinese cemetery structure were built on his plot, said Shafee.

The case is being investigated under Section 186 of the Penal Code, for preventing public servants from discharging their duties. — Bernama

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