KOTA BARU - Kelantan has maintained that the hudud capital punishment, if enforced in the state, would be a more humane way to deter people from indulging in criminal activities.
"Under the Penal Code that is currently practised, the accused must first be proven guilty 'beyond reasonable doubt'.
"Under hudud, cases are to be proven with 'absolute certainty'," said Deputy Mentri Besar Datuk Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah, who heads the state hudud technical committee.
He added that hudud provides consideration for mitigation, such as in cases of people in dire straits committing theft because they have genuinely no other means of fending for their family.
Mohd Amar was speaking to reporters after handing over the keys of 50 double-storey terrace houses to their new owners in Taman Pinggiran Golf in Pengkalan Chepa, near here, yesterday.
He also conducted the groundbreaking for another 43 units of houses under the ninth phase of the housing scheme developed by Profil Impian Sdn Bhd, a company under Kelantan State Economic Development Corporation.
Mohd Amar said in cases where hudud calls for the convict's hand to be amputated (such as in cases of theft), this procedure would be done by surgeons.
"After the amputation is carried out, the convicted person would be allowed to go back home to be with his family.
"This is unlike the current criminal procedure code, which metes out a jail sentence on offenders," he said, adding that this incurred costs for the Government.
"I want to assure non-Muslims that the perception of using an axe to amputate the limbs of criminals in public is a fiction of their imagination."
Allaying fears of non-Muslims, Mohd Amar said the hudud move would benefit them as it would greatly help in reducing the crime rate.
He also assured non-Muslims that syariah laws, which provide for hudud, were not applicable to them.
On the objection raised by DAP because the hudud stand taken by PAS allegedly contravened a 2010 common policy framework among the parties in Pakatan Rakyat to reject an Islamic state, Mohd Amar said: "I need to point out here that PAS did not renege on the agreement because, when it was signed, it (the agreement) was understood to be about a national agenda.
"Kelantan's move to implement hudud is not categorised as a national-level agreement as the state's Syariah Criminal Code Enactment 1993 was approved long before the inception of Pakatan Rakyat."
Mohd Amar said his committee would brief PAS leaders before seeking to meet its allies, particularly DAP, for a dialogue on the issue.