Online casino's Raya ad causes a stir, police and MCMC take action

·2-min read
Online casino's Raya ad causes a stir, police and MCMC take action
Online casino's Raya ad causes a stir, police and MCMC take action

An online casino caused a stir on social media over a Hari Raya Aidilfitri advertisement promoting gambling as a way to get funds to celebrate the festival.

The 2-minute, 48-second video clip featured a cast in traditional Malay clothing in an archetypal Hari Raya advertisement.

This includes a character who doesn't have enough money to "balik kampung".

It also featured lyrics that promoted the company's online gambling services. The company's website does not leave clues as to where it was incorporated.

The video, which features a local cast, includes a character who doesn't have enough money to get back to his hometown ("balik kampung").

The video, said to be uploaded last week, caused backlash from those accusing it of being insensitive to Muslims. Gambling is forbidden in Islam.

Deputy Inspector-General of Police Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani said police would investigate the video's producer and actors under Section 504 of the Penal Code for intentional insult aimed at provoking a breach of the peace.

The section carries a jail term of up to two years or a fine, or both, for those convicted.

Police will also be carrying out investigations under Section 4(1)(g) of the Common Gaming Houses Act - for soliciting people to gamble at a common gaming house.

A common gaming house is a premise where unlicensed gambling takes place.

Acryl advised people not to spread the video, to avoid causing public unease.

Meanwhile, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) said it has contacted social media platforms such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter and asked them to take down the video.

"This will only help those involved to spread their ideology to promote online gambling, which can be harmful to Malaysian society," MCMC said.

Earlier, politicians from both sides of the divide condemned the video.

Federal Territories PAS said the video was both humiliating and a violation of the law.

Meanwhile, PKR Women's wing chief Fuziah Salleh said Muslims would find the video clip very disturbing because it is linked to Ramadan.

"The company is using social media to encourage people to gamble after breaking fast during Ramadan in order to celebrate Hari Raya.

"This runs contrary to the understanding that fasting is to connect with our religion and stay away from sin," Fuziah said.