Malaysians, get to know your Constitution — Shad Saleem Faruqi

Source: The Star Online

BY SHAD SALEEM FARUQI

Shad Saleem Faruqi - file pic

Shad Saleem Faruqi – file pic

A COLLEAGUE requested me to give a guest talk to her students on “Constitution, Law & Society”. I began by pointing out that as with all laws, the relationship between the constitution and society is one of interdependence. They shape each other in innumerable ways.

More than other fields of law, a constitution reflects the dreams, demands, values and vulnerabilities of the body politic.

A constitution is not just a legal document. It is linked with philosophy and politics. It has as its backdrop the panorama of history, geography, economics and culture. A constitution that will endure must not depart too far from the spirit of the people. Read more

The quest for gender equality — Shad Saleem Faruqi

Source: The Star

BY SHAD SALEEM FARUQI

Shad Saleem Faruqi - file pic

Shad Saleem Faruqi – file pic

AT the 2018 Golden Globes Award on Jan 7, Oprah Winfrey, the respected American media personality, delivered a stirring call for “a new day” on the horizon for American women. Her speech made me reflect on the faltering quest for gender equality in our own constitutional democracy.

At the outset, it needs to be acknowledged that the ideal of sex equality is so complex and contradictory that everywhere it is buffeted by currents and cross-currents.

On the positive side, Malaysia has plenty of institutions, laws, principles and policies to secure justice for women.

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Standing behind academic freedom — Sisters in Islam

Source: The Malay Mail Online

BY SISTERS IN ISLAM

DECEMBER 20 — Sisters in Islam stands in full support of the constitutional expert and renowned academic, Professor Shad Saleem Faruqi and demands the investigation against him under section 504 of the Penal Code be stopped immediately.

As an academic whose interest and expertise lies in Constitutional matters and Islamic policies, Professor Shad acted within his professional boundaries when he commented on religious radicalism in his recent article in The Star.

Section 504 of the Penal Code states that “any act that intentionally insults or intending to cause provocation that causes a break of public peace”, is liable to imprisonment for terms up to two years, fined or both. Hence, SIS strongly condemns this blatant abuse of power in an attempt to subdue freedom of expression. Read more

Police should drop investigation into law don, legal rights group says

Source: The Malaysian Insight

The Malaysian Insight pic by Kamal Ariffin, December 19, 2017.

Professor Shad Saleem Faruqi is under investigation for his article, ‘Religious Radicalism on the Rise’. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Kamal Ariffin, December 19, 2017.

POLICE should have used its discretion and dismissed a report against constitutional law expert Professor Shad Saleem Faruqi over an article he wrote about diversity in Islam, a legal rights advocacy group said.

Lawyers for Liberty said the criminal investigation into the emeritus professor at Universiti Malaya was “shocking and unacceptable” as he had merely written an opinion piece.

“The police should have summarily dismissed the report as frivolous and not criminal in nature instead of troubling the professor and other witnesses and having their statements taken.

“The wide investigative powers that are vested in the police come with a necessary degree of discretion and good faith, as not all police reports against government critics or dissidents must be investigated,” LFL’s executive director Eric Paulsen said in a statement today. Read more

The Constitution and the private sector — Shad Saleem Faruqi

Source: The Star Online

BY SHAD SALEEM FARUQI

Shad Saleem Faruqi - file pic

Shad Saleem Faruqi – file pic

The view that the protection of the Constitution is restricted to the public sector is based on a bygone political ideology.

SOMETIMES trivial issues ignite tremendous debates.

If a laundromat owner running a public utility business that is licensed by a local authority excludes non-Muslim clients, is his discriminatory conduct counter to the uplifting message of our Constitution that “all persons are equal before the law”?

Is his conduct a violation of the provision that “except as expressly authorised … there shall be no discrimination … on the ground only of religion, race, descent, place of birth or gender…”?

Opinions are deeply divided.

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Drift towards intellectual intolerance — Shad Saleem Faruqi

Source: The Star Online

BY SHAD SALEEM FARUQI

Shad Saleem Faruqi - file pic

Shad Saleem Faruqi – file pic

INTERNATIONALLY acclaimed Tur­kish Islamic intellectual Mustafa Akyol was detained by the Federal Territories Islamic Affairs Depart­ment (Jawi) on Sept 24 for giving a talk on Islam without prior accreditation from the relevant Religious Teaching Supervisory Committee.

His host, Dr Ahmad Farouk Musa of the Islamic Renaissance Front, is being investigated for abetting him.

This embarrassing episode throws up significant issues of constitutional law. Let us note that in a country with a supreme Consti­tution, any civil or criminal, federal or state, secular or religious law cannot be enacted to confer absolute powers on any one.
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Constitutional view on Bin Abdullah case — Shad Saleem Faruqi

Source: The Star Online

BY SHAD SALEEM FARUQI

Shad Saleem Faruqi - file pic

Shad Saleem Faruqi – file pic

Islam is like a mansion with many rooms, and diversity abounds in Islamic jurisprudence.

COURT of Appeal judges Datuk Abdul Rahman Sebli, Datuk Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat and Puan Sri Zaleha Yusof must be congratulated for their courageous and principled decision in the “Bin Abdullah” case.

Their verdict is based on sound principles of administrative law and has far-reaching, positive implications for our constitutional system.

The issue, in this case, was whether an illegitimate Muslim child can carry the name of his father. Read more

Acknowledging Pope Francis as an apostle of peace — Shad Saleem Faruqi

Source: The Star Online

BY SHAD SALEEM FARUQI

Shad Saleem Faruqi - file pic

Shad Saleem Faruqi – file pic

We must expose attempts to justify every form of hatred in the name of religion and to condemn these attempts as idolatrous caricatures of God.

MANY corners of our world are bristling with intolerance and consumed by war and aggression.

Some terrorists and anarchists, like the ones in Syria and Iraq, misuse the holy name of religion to justify their perfidies. Others are more sophisticated. They employ the vocabulary of “democracy”, “human rights”, “humanitarian intervention” and the “war against terrorism” to devastate lands that (not just by coincidence) belong to a race or religion they regard as inferior to theirs.
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Discretionary powers of the King — Shad Saleem Faruqi

Source: The Star Online

BY SHAD SALEEM FARUQI

Shad Saleem Faruqi - file pic

Shad Saleem Faruqi – file pic

HIS Majesty Sultan Muhammad V, the Sultan of Kelantan, was installed as our 15th Yang di-Pertuan Agong on April 24. It is timely, therefore, to examine the constitutional position of our monarch.

Broadly speaking, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is invested with two categories of functions. First, a vast array of non-discretionary functions, exercisable on advice.

Second, a small number of discretionary functions in some critical areas of law and politics.
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