Bukit Aman investigating author behind political book for allegedly insulting Malaysian coat of arms

Bukit Aman CID deputy director Deputy Comm Mior Faridalathrash Wahid was reported as saying that those subjected to investigations are the author, editor and publisher of the book. — Picture by Hari Anggara
Bukit Aman CID deputy director Deputy Comm Mior Faridalathrash Wahid was reported as saying that those subjected to investigations are the author, editor and publisher of the book. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, June 29 —  Bukit Aman confirms that the police will be investigating those behind a book that allegedly insulted the “Jata Negara” (Malaysian coat of arms) on its cover.

The Star online reported that Bukit Aman CID deputy director Deputy Comm Mior Faridalathrash Wahid said those subjected to investigations are the author, editor and publisher of the book.

He confirmed receiving a police report on the matter. 

“We will investigate and call up the relevant parties, including the author and publisher,” he reportedly told the online portal today.

On Sunday, Umno Youth chief Datuk Asyraf Wajdi Dasuki urged the Home Ministry to take action against the publishing of the book called Rebirth: Reformasi, Resistance, and Hope in New Malaysia and called for it to be banned. 

The book, which was published this year, features articles by political analysts and journalists, and includes reports on the 2018 general election.

The image on the book cover bears a resemblance to the national coat of arms, and features a naked child flanked by two tigers with humanoid faces stepping on a crocodile.

“The cover of the book clearly showed the author’s disrespect for the dignity of the coat of arms. Stern action should be taken if there was an intention to insult the nation’s official symbol,” he said.

Many people online have also called for action as the cover of the book insulted the constitution and Rukun Negara.

Asyraf said the publication of the book had shown that a 2016 decision to impose heavier penalties, including a maximum jail term of three years and a maximum fine of RM20,000 had not been enough to deter people from openly insulting such symbols.

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