Melaka grave des­e­crated due to road project

New Straits Times - - News -

MELAKA: When Leow Hian Heng dis­cov­ered that his great­great grand­fa­ther’s grave in Kam­pung Gangsa here had been des­e­crated, he lodged a po­lice re­port.

Fifth-gen­er­a­tion Leow said he was shocked to find the grave of Leow Poh Seng, a friend of Yap Ah Loy, dam­aged due to a road­widen­ing project in Jalan Gangsa here.

“On Feb 27, I was shocked to dis­cover that some­one had tres­passed on to my fam­ily’s an­ces­tral burial ground in Kam­pung Gangsa, Durian Tung­gal.

“I no­ticed that the tomb­stone was miss­ing as it had been dug out by ir­re­spon­si­ble par­ties.

“How can they do this? This has af­fected the feng shui and the peace of my an­ces­tor,” he said when met with his brother, Leow Hian Long, 50.

The 63-year-old con­trac­tor said the grave was the only one in the area as it was pri­vate land un­der the burial ground lot pur­chased by his late great-great grand­fa­ther when he was still alive.

The fam­ily claimed they were not con­tacted by the road con­trac­tors prior to the start of con­struc­tion work and were seek­ing an ex­pla­na­tion from the author­i­ties, in­clud­ing the Pub­lic Works Depart­ment (PWD), on why no per­mis­sion was sought for the re­moval.

“This is pri­vate land be­long­ing to our fam­ily and used as burial ground.

“It should not be a prob­lem to check with the Land Of­fice and to con­tact us, in­stead of claim­ing that they could not lo­cate the de­scen­dants of the grave.”

He said his great-great grand­fa­ther was an in­tel­lec­tual and a friend of Yap Ah Loy.

“My great-great grand­fa­ther was an im­por­tant fig­ure and one of Yap’s al­lies in the min­ing busi­ness.

“He had, on var­i­ous oc­ca­sions, hosted Yap at his house in Ke­sang here,” he said, adding that his great-great grand­fa­ther died in 1928.

He said the fam­ily had con­sulted tem­ple priests, who said they had to re­build the grave.

“Not only do we need to build new tomb­stones, but we also need to find dates and in­vite monks to help with chant­ing and the cost could go up to RM10,000.

“I will come out with an es­ti­ma­tion and I hope PWD will com­pen­sate me.”

PIX BY RASUL AZLI SA­MAD

The Leow fam­ily in­spect­ing their an­ces­tor’s des­e­crated grave in Kam­pung Gangsa, Durian Tung­gal, Melaka, on Satur­day. (Inset) Leow Hian Heng.

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