Funds for non-Is­lamic places of wor­ship

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

GE­ORGE TOWN: Non-Is­lamic places of wor­ship can seek fi­nan­cial as­sis­tance from the Pe­nang gov­ern­ment if they are car­ry­ing out main­te­nance, re­pairs, ren­o­va­tions and ex­pan­sion work on such premises.

State Ribi co­or­di­na­tion com­mit­tee chair­man Jagdeep Singh Deo said all they needed to do was to fol­low the pro­ce­dures by sub­mit­ting the proper doc­u­men­ta­tion to the state hous­ing com­mit­tee for ap­proval.

Jagdeep, who is also chair­man of the com­mit­tee, said the state has taken over the author­ity of over­see­ing the trust fund for non-Is­lamic houses of wor­ship (Ribi) from the Pe­nang Is­land City Coun­cil and Se­berang Prai Mu­nic­i­pal Coun­cil about three months ago.

Of the 25 ap­pli­ca­tions re­ceived the state has given the green light to 11 ap­pli­ca­tions com­pris­ing six Bud­dhist/Taoist tem­ples, three churches, a Hindu and a Sikh tem­ple since it took con­trol of the fund which has some RM6 mil­lion, he added.

He was speak­ing to re­porters yes­ter­day af­ter per­form­ing the ground­break­ing cer­e­mony of a Taoist tem­ple, cost­ing RM500,000, here.

Con­tri­bu­tions to the fund came from de­vel­op­ers who ap­plied to be ex­empted from pro­vid­ing land for non-Is­lamic places of wor­ship.

Jagdeep said de­vel­op­ers need to ad­here to the guide­lines and con­trib­ute to the fund when any project is to be built. – by Ed­mund Lee

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