KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 25 — Selangor police have asked a non-Muslim man to change the shape of his altar’s roof after it courted the wrong kind of attention on the internet for looking like the roof of a mosque.
In a statement, Selangor police said after the pictures went viral, they approached the owner of the altar and he had agreed to change the shape of the altar after receiving scrutiny from Muslims online.
“From the information we gathered, we found this altar to be a longstanding one and was built to worship a Malay guardian known as “Datuk Gong” or “Na Tuk Kong” in Chinese and there was no intention to offend the delicate sensitivities of other races.
“Since this issue went viral on social media, the authorities discussed the matter with the owner and he has agreed to change or alter the shape of the altar,” the police said in a statement.
Initially, the complaint was made by Nur Fathiah Syazwana Shaharuddin, 25, who now goes by the moniker “Cleopatra” on her Instagram account.
This is 拿督公 Datuk Gong or Datuk Keramat— 𝙆𝙀𝙉 🧢 (@ruffleseed) January 21, 2020
Since he's 'believed' by Chinese as a local Malay guardian, shrines are usually decorated with items related to the Datuk and his position as a Malay; a Malay sarong, songkok, keris, baju Melayu, even local mosque architecture. pic.twitter.com/sqZxe2y71o
Nur Fathiah courted controversy last year for getting a meeting with sports minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman regarding the promotion of e-sports in the country.
Syed Saddiq faced allegations of bias and power abuse on the meeting, after it was made public that Cleopatra had recently joined his Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, and was welcomed into the Segambut branch by Sharifah Zohra Jabeen of “listen, listen” infamy.
Malay Mail did a search and found out that at the time of the meet, Cleo International, the company Cleopatra represents, was only registered for a week with the Companies Commission of Malaysia which raised further eyebrows of its ability to handle an e-sports portfolio.
Nur Fathiah snapped a picture of the controversial altar and posted it on her Instagram page four days ago asking “Who build this? I need further explanation. Location Taman Klang Utama.”
She received both support and backlash from citizens. Some felt she was being racist while others rallied by her side for championing Islamic rights.
Upon hearing news of the police action, Nur Fathiah then shared the police statement and the accompanying picture of the altar on Instagram saying: “Thanks a million to the police and all parties involved for taking action following my raising of this issue.”
However on her Twitter handle @lxcleopatraxl, she wasn’t so humble.
“The police’s decision is my decision as well. You are welcome to make your protests. Your opinion doesn’t affect or the police at all if you keep ranting on socmed. Thank you,” she said.