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Malaysian state mulls guillotine as punishment for thieves

PTI 17 Nov 2014, 9:29:05 AM IST
PTI

Kuala Lumpur: A minister in Malaysia's Kelantan state has suggested that a 'mini' guillotine could be used to amputate those convicted of stealing in the Muslim state, which is ruled by a fundamentalist party.

The guillotine, similar to that used to behead French King Louis XVI and his queen Marie Antoinette in 1793, is being considered by leaders of the state who are keen to implement Islamic Hudud law which seeks severe punishment for thieves and rapists, which include amputation.

The fundamentalist Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) led state's hudud law technical committee, said to be facing problems finding suitable methods to amputate limbs of those convicted of stealing, is considering this 'mini' form of the guillotine as an option.

The party chairman Amar Abdullah said he would suggest to the panel to use such a contraption which would not need a surgeon to operate.

Kelantan deputy Chief minister Mohd Amar said despite the negative reactions to getting surgeons to amputate the limbs of offenders, the committee was still mulling the idea, Star said today.

"The surgeon must first agree to carry out the procedure but he is likely to face the wrath of the Malaysian Medical Association for violating the Hippocratic Oath," he said.

The guillotine was fast, effective and required only one person to operate, two others to hold down the offender and a doctor to ensure the punished person does not drastically suffer from the punishment, he said adding that the judge who meted out the sentence must also be present.

"I will make extensive studies on the method used during the French Revolution in the 18th century when guillotines were used to sever the heads of those sentenced to death," he was quoted as saying by The Star.

Kelantan intends to table two private member's Bills in Parliament for Hudud laws to be implemented and enforced in the state from next year.

Currently, under Article 76A of the Federal Constitution, crimes such as stealing, robbing, causing hurt, rape and murder come under the Penal Code.

Former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has sais PAS wanted to implement hudud in Kelantan to win votes.

"PAS is doing this just to gain political mileage, it is not about Islam," online portal Malaysia Insider said.

"There is no justice if hudud is implemented because the hands of a Muslim thief are cut while a non-Muslim spends two months in prison. Is that justice? If it is not justice, then it is not Islamic," Mahathir said.