Artist of ‘kolam’ vandalised by colleague at Klang private hospital urges calm

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 31 — The artist of the kolam vandalised at the KPJ Klang Specialist Hospital expressed his gratitude to Malaysians today for their outpouring of support and condemnation of the incident.

The artist, who said he also worked at the hospital, then called for calm as the police were already investigating.

“First and foremost, I would like to thank every one of you who spoke up on this kolam issue regardless of religion and race. For your kind information, our hospital management and higher authority have taken appropriate action on the irresponsible behaviour of the related staff.

“Therefore, I kindly request you guys NOT to make the issue viral anymore. Let us stay united and peacefully in this multiracial country. Thank you once again. Love and peace to all Malaysians,” he said.

In a video accompanying his Facebook post, the person said he did not know the motive for the vandalism but chose to think that it was for “something good.”

KPJ Healthcare Berhad today said it has suspended two employees over an online video showing the defacement of the kolam at its Klang Specialist Hospital.

In a statement apologising over the incident on the firm’s premises, KPJ Healthcare said it did not condone such acts of vandalism, which was also not any reflection of the service provider’s culture, values or its practices.

The company then said it has lodged a police report on the matter and launched an internal investigation against both the suspended employees — the vandal and the other suspected of recording the video footage.

Police earlier confirmed the duo went voluntarily to the district police headquarters to have their statements recorded at about 11pm yesterday.

They were subsequently arrested.

Both have been remanded for three days from today for investigation under Section 298A of the Penal Code for causing disharmony, disunity, or feelings of enmity, hatred or ill-will, or prejudicing the maintenance of harmony or unity, on grounds of religion.

The video, showing a person wearing a face mask stepping all over a kolam, drew anger from Malaysian Hindus who marked Deepavali on October 24 this year.

The kolam is a regular feature in Indian households during auspicious celebrations and it is also to welcome Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth.