Siti Kassim Bon Odori JAKIM
Peguam, Siti Kassim bercakap kepada media selepas memberi keterangan berhubung kenyataannya berkenaan pusat tahfiz yang dimuatnaik di Facebook telah diputarbelit oleh pelbagai pihak di Menara Suruhanjaya Komunikasi dan Multimedia Malaysia (SKMM), Cyberjaya. foto AFFAN FAUZI, 18 JUN 2020

By Muhammad Azizul Osman

KUALA LUMPUR – Controversial lawyer and activist, Siti Kassim criticised the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM) for banning the Muslims from joining the Bon Odori Festival which will be held at the Shah Alam National Sports Complex Panasonic on 16 July.

According to Siti Kassim, JAKIM is easily confused with the Japanese festival celebration concept.

“The only people confused about Islam is JAKIM. Normal every day Muslims have no problem being together with non-Muslims in their festivals and celebrating them.

“Unfortunately, akidah (creed) JAKIM not very strong. Easily confused,” Siti Kassim alleged in her Facebook post today.

She added, the Bon Odori festival has been held in the country for a long time and questioned JAKIM for only making statements about event now.

“I think they’re suffering from some sort of spiritual dissonance. This festival has been going on for years. Why suddenly now?

“They shouldn’t treat us as if we’re unable to use our own brains. Why don’t JAKIM just tell the Muslims to go and live in a cave instead?” she posted.

JAKIM, through the Minister at Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs), Datuk Idris Ahmad advised the Muslims on Monday (6 June) to not attend the Bon Odori Festival.

According to Idris, research by JAKIM found that the programme contains elements of other religion.

Yesterday, the Penang Mufti, Datuk Seri Dr. Wan Salim Wan Mohd. Noor said alleged that the festival has elements which are feared to encourage shirk.

Furthermore, the commemoration of the ancestors’ souls through dance and prayers and others are not encouraged in Islam as there are concerns that one may fall into the sin of shirk to Allah.

The Bon Odori Festival will also be held in Penang on 30 July at Padang Kota Lama. It is also an annual event in that state.

The festival has been celebrated in Japan for 500 years. It features dances in memory and respect of the spirits of the ancestors in the Japanese Buddhism culture. -MalaysiaGazette