IPOH, April 17 — Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Saarani Mohamad today confirmed modifications had been made to the limestone foothill at the Qing Xin Ling Leisure and Cultural Village where a man was killed by a falling rock recently.

Saarani said the caves and hills were old, have stalagmites and stalactites, and should not have been disturbed.

“We have checked and found that there were some modifications done by certain individuals inside the cave and at the foothill. This is very dangerous,” he said in a press conference at the Menteri Besar’s Office here.

Saarani also said the mitigation measures prepared by the tourism operators around the foothill were not sufficient to safeguard public safety.


“I was made to understand that tourism operators have prepared net roof as safety precautionary.

“But what happened was that the rock fell on the net and bounced from there. This means that the mitigation prepared is not enough,” he added.

Saarani also said the special foothill development committee, which was formed in 2022 and chaired by the Perak Land and Mines Office director, will reissue a circular to direct all local councils, foothill tourism operators and agencies involved to be more careful.


“All the responsible parties should follow the right and proper standard when establishing the mitigation measures,” he said.

“We don’t compromise with safety. It’s not about the caves or the operators’ livelihood, it’s about people’s lives.

“The recent case confirmed what we had worried before, which eventually led to the formation of the committee,” he added.

When asked if the Qing Xin Ling Leisure and Cultural Village will be closed for tourism as proposed by Taman Saikat residents there, Saarani said the state government will consider the matter based on the suggestion made by the special committee.

“We have a lot of factors that need to the reviewed and considered. Those who affected will ask to close, but the operators and hawkers nearby the area will want to continue.

“But whatever it is, people’s lives will be our number one priority,” he said.

Yesterday, The Star reported that some residents of Taman Saikat had urged the menteri besar to scrutinise tourism and commercial activities at the foot of the limestone hills.

The residents association said they had written numerous letters to the Ipoh City Council and even approached their assemblyman, MP and other politicians to put a stop to activities by the cultural village operator as they feared a tragedy would happen, but without success.

The RA also pointed out that limestones are very delicate and that they are worried landslides or rockslides could potentially occur and put the residents’ safety at risk.