Tajikistan bans youth from mosques
DUSHANBE — Tajikistan on Wednesday banned all children and teenagers from worshipping in mosques as the volatile Central Asian republic pressed ahead with its battle against rising Islamic fundamentalism.
President Emomali Rakhmon signed the measure into law after it was unanimously adopted by the upper house of parliament last month, local news reports said.
The law bans those under the age of 18 from praying in churches or mosques and requires them to study in secular schools, Aziya-Plus news agency said.
The authorities said the change would help stem the spread of religious fundamentalism in the overwhelmingly Muslim but secular nation.
But the bill’s passage was strongly condemned by religious groups.
“The ban to attend mosques will give rise to the negative reaction among the people,” prominent Muslim theologian and former deputy prime minister Akbar Turadzhonzoda said in an open letter to the president.
Other religious leaders noted that Rakhmon signed the law in the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan — a period of fasting and prayer for Muslims.
The president also approved separate changes to the criminal code that make “active participation” in an unauthorised rally into an offence punishable by up to five years in prison.
Those found guilty of providing “illegal religious education” to young people can now be put behind bars for up to 12 years.
KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) — An undercover Islamic team in Malaysia is on the look-out for Muslims who violate Ramadan by eating, drinking or smoking during the day-time, a report said Monday.
Authorities in Kota Baru, state capital of Kelantan, told the New Straits Times that plain-clothes officers would spy on food outlets and hand out fines of 20 ringgit (six dollars) to those caught cheating during the Muslim fasting month.
During Ramadan, which began last week, observant Muslims abstain from eating, smoking and sex from dawn to dusk.
“This is the first time the council is taking this action as we have received numerous complaints about those who eat openly during the fasting period,” city council public relations director Azman Mohd Daham said.
Muslim food outlets will be slapped with 500 ringgit (144 dollar) fines for violating a directive to remain closed until 3pm, he said.
Both are perfect examples of extremism one as many would call liberal (extremism) and the other religious(extremism) . There does not exist a perfect model which can define the relationship between state and religion and this variability reflects in the two. While the Malaysians want to define themselves a muslim state but i doubt if these actions reflect their position. Fasting by Compulsion is not fasting at all. The voluntary nature is what makes it fast.
I don’t think that the state should take away religion from the masses or if it intends to do so, banning entry into the mosques is not the appropriate way to go. Freedom to have an opinion is the most basic right that every state should provide and religion to me is a form of opinion rather acquired opinion. The belief in it makes it my opinion. By banning entry into mosque or churches you are banning my right to opinion.
None the less there are people who would consider either of the two progressive and may be that is the fundamental reason they are being brought into force.