Stop using religion to divide the people, PAS told

Stop using religion to divide the people, PAS told
Mtukule of Malawi jumping to catch a pass during a netball preliminary round match at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. The Kelantan PAS state government has banned males from watching female sporting events, and requires female players to wear long-sleeved T-shirts and loose-fitting track pants in their upcoming netball tournament.

PETALING JAYA - PAS must stop using religion to further divide the people in Kelantan, said MCA central committee member Datuk Lua Choon Hann.

Referring to the state government's ban on male spectators from attending female netball matches, he said PAS should stop subjecting sports to religious scrutiny.

"The Kelantan government must be reminded that banning male spectators from netball will not in anyway help popularise or develop the sport," said Lua, who is also Kelantan MCA state liaison committee secretary.

"It is an utterly unwise move that will only cause the internationally well-known sport to die a natural death," Lua said in a statement on Friday.

He added that the best way to popularise a sport was to enlarge the viewership, not restrict it.

Lua cited other instances of gender segregation, such as at cashier counters, and restrictions on the sale of lottery and liquor in the state, as examples of the hardline stance of PAS which infringed on the rights of non-Muslims.

MCA Religious and Harmony Bureau chief Datuk Ti Lian Ker described the move as "regressive and silly", owing to its negative impact towards the development of the sports and sports tourism industry.

He said Kelantan PAS was hoping to placate conservative members and supporters within their ranks by championing hudud and segregation issues.

"They (PAS) are trying hard to pull the wool over the eyes of their supporters by championing hudud and gender segregation in the hope their conservative members will mudah lupa (easily forget) their past insincere actions," he added.

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