Activists fail to get leave to challenge AGs decision not
Activists fail to get leave to challenge AGs decision not

Activists fail to get leave to challenge AG’s decision not to prosecute preachers

PUTRAJAYA: The Federal Court has dismissed an application by two activists who sought leave to challenge the Attorney General’s decision not to prosecute preachers Muhammad Zamri Vinoth Kalimuthu and Firdaus Wong Wan Hung for allegedly insulting Hindus.

A three-member panel of judges comprising Justices Datuk Harmindar Singh Dhaliwal, Datuk Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil and Datuk Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera dismissed the application brought by S. Sivakumar and M. Rajasegaran on Monday (May 6).

Justice Harmindar said the issues raised by the duo were resolved by the court in the case of Sundra Rajoo and there was no merit in their leave application for the issues to be re-canvassed before the Federal Court.

“We find the application for leave does not meet the threshold requirement under Section 96 of the Courts of Judicature Act 1964,” he said.

He said the AG or the public prosecutor does not have absolute or unfettered discretion under Article 145(3) of the Federal Constitution as such discretion is amenable to judicial review in appropriate, rare and exceptional cases and the law on this is well settled.

Sivakumar and Rajasegaran had sought leave to proceed with their appeal to the Federal Court contesting the rulings of both the Court of Appeal and the High Court.

They wanted the court to determine two legal questions pertaining to the AG’s discretion to prosecute.

In their application, they sought to declare that the AG’s decision not to charge the Muslim converts (Muhammad Zamri and Firdaus) as recorded in the Shah Alam Magistrate’s Court on April 26, 2021, as invalid and void.

They also sought a mandamus order to compel the AG to institute criminal proceedings against the preachers.

Sivakumar and Rajasegaran contended that in another case where a member of a non-governmental organisation sought to initiate a private lawsuit against Muhammad Zamri and Firdaus, the prosecution informed the Magistrate’s Court that the police had classified the reports against the two individuals as “no further action”.

On Dec 1, last year, the Court of Appeal dismissed the duo’s appeal.

Senior federal counsel Ahmad Hanir Hambaly @ Alwi appeared for the AG, while lawyer T. Gunaseelan represented Sivakumar and Rajasegaran. – BK

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