Sikh group meets Penang mufti officials, mother says daughter has recited kalimah syahadah

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SNSM Penang president Hardeep Singh (middle) flanked by former president Harjinder Singh and exco membr Naamjit Singh – Photo supplied
By Asia Samachar Team | MALAYSIA |

A Sikh group today (3 April 2019) met with officials from the Penang State Mufti Department to get to the bottom of the purported conversion to Islam of K. Surinder Kaur Bedi.

Surinder, 37, succumbed to injuries on Monday (1 April) after she was allegedly attacked by her 55-year old acquaintance the day before.

“We had a cordial meeting with the Mufti’s officials,” Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia (SNSM) Penang advisor Harjinder Singh told Asia Samachar. “We took this effort in the interest of the deceased as well as to ensure that such a misunderstanding does not happen in the future.”

On Monday, the Muslim authorities had given Surinder a Muslim burial on the strength of a letter from Penang mufti Wan Salim Wan Mohd Noor to the Penang Islamic affairs department known as the Jabatan Hal Ehwal Agama Islam Negeri Penang (JHEAIPP).

It stated that Surinder’s conversion to Islam was based on a claim by her brother, Imran Khan Mohamad Qurban Ali. He had also made a police report stating that his younger sister had converted to Islam.

Harjinder said that they will be meeting Wan Salim, who was not available today, on Friday.

In an article yesterday, Free Malaysia Today quoted Penang Islamic Department director Zulkifli Long as saying that Surinder’s name was not listed in the state’s converts register.

Meanwhile, The Malay Mail reports that Surinder’s mother has warned outsiders to leave her late daughter’s body alone in the Muslim cemetery where she is buried after her conversion to Islam was questioned.

“No matter what happens, I will not allow any parties to interfere and try to exhume my daughter’s body,” the 69-year-old Nazirah Bibi @ Kuldip Kaur told the news portal (See: Leave my daughter’s body alone, says Surinder’s mother)

She was said to have express her anger that SNSM Penang had issued a statement that they wanted Surinder’s body to be exhumed if there was no proof of her conversion to Islam.

According to the report, Nazirah claimed that Surinder had already converted to Islam since last year but did not officially register her conversion.

Nazirah said even if there was no official documentation to proof that her youngest child had converted to Islam, outsiders have no right to interfere in Surinder’s funeral rites.

“I am her mother, I am still alive, I will not allow anyone else to take her body. Our whole family had converted to Islam for many years and our God is Allah so don’t touch her body, let her rest in peace,” she was quoted by the portal. “I can’t let anyone take my daughter’s body out from her grave. It’s wrong to do this. I am her mother, I know she’s a Muslim,” she added.

She added: “My daughter had recited the kalimah syahadah twice many times in front of me, my son and other family members.”

 

RELATED STORY:

Did she convert to Islam? (Asia Samachar, 2 April 2019)

Penang woman seriously injured in helmet attack by motorcyclist dies – NST (Asia Samachar, 1 April 2019)

 

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7 COMMENTS

  1. Leave my daughter’s body alone, says Surinder’s mother

    Published 51 minutes ago on 03 April 2019

    By Opalyn Mok

    GEORGE TOWN, April 3 — The mother of Surinder Kaur Bedi has warned outsiders to leave her late daughter’s body alone in the Muslim cemetery where she is buried after her conversion to Islam was questioned.

    Nazirah Bibi @ Kuldip Kaur was angered by the Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia Penang branch’s statement that they wanted Surinder’s body to be exhumed if there was no proof of her conversion to Islam.

    “No matter what happens, I will not allow any parties to interfere and try to exhume my daughter’s body,” the 69-year-old said when met at her home today.

    She said Surinder had already converted to Islam since last year but did not officially register her conversion.

    Nazirah said even if there was no official documentation to proof that her youngest child had converted to Islam, outsiders have no right to interfere in Surinder’s funeral rites.

    “I am her mother, I am still alive, I will not allow anyone else to take her body. Our whole family had converted to Islam for many years and our God is Allah so don’t touch her body, let her rest in peace,” she said.

    “I can’t let anyone take my daughter’s body out from her grave. It’s wrong to do this. I am her mother, I know she’s a Muslim,” she added.

    Nazirah said the whole family, including Surinder, has always practiced the Muslim way of life.

    “My daughter had recited the kalimah syahadah twice many times in front of me, my son and other family members,” she added.

    She pointed out that Surinder lived with her so she would know what religion her deceased daughter had practised.

    Nazirah said her daughter was a filial daughter who had supported her and the family.

    “I have poor health so she would often buy medicine for me and she was also close to her late father and third brother,” she said.

    She said Surinder had told her before this that she wanted to be buried in accordance with Muslim rites instead of under the Sikhism rites.

    “She had told me before that she wanted to be buried next to her late father and brother,” she said.

    Nazirah said she had informed the Penang Mufti Department, the Penang Islamic Department and the police of this fact.

    Surinder was severely injured after being allegedly assaulted with a helmet by her boyfriend after a heated argument on Saturday night.

    The 37-year-old cook was sent to the hospital in a critical condition and died at 5am on Monday.

    Her brother, Imran Khan, lodged a police report on Monday morning to claim that Surinder had recited the kalimah syahadah twice before him and his mother, and that she had converted to Islam.

    He had also met with the mufti to issue a letter to confirm that she had converted to Islam.

    Surinder was buried in accordance with Muslim rites at the Jelutong Muslim Cemetery.

    Earlier today, the Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia Penang branch advisor Harjinder Singh asked for proof of Surinder’s conversion.

    He said if there was no proof, the association would ask for her body to be exhumed and that she be laid to rest in accordance with Sikh funeral rites.

    The association will be meeting with the mufti and the Penang Islamic Department to discuss this issue on Friday.

    https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2019/04/03/leave-my-daughters-body-alone-says-surinders-mother/1739404

  2. ‘Let my daughter rest in peace’ 

    NEW STRAITS TIMES, 3.4.19

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    By BALVIN KAUR – April 3, 2019 @ 6:41pm

    GEORGE TOWN: “Please let me grieve the loss of my daughter in peace.”

    This was the plea from the mother of a woman who died recently after she was hit on the head with a helmet.

    Her plea followed reports that the Sikh community was contesting the family’s claim that K. Surinder Kaur Bedi had converted to Islam before her untimely death.

    Nazirah Bibi, 68, said she was shocked by the ruckus following the death of her 37-year-old daughter, who was nicknamed Koji.

    “Where were they when we were poor and suffering? When we needed help?

    “They were nowhere to be seen but here they are now stirring up trouble for us and adding to our grief,” she said when met at her unit at the Mutiara Idaman flat here today.

    On Saturday, Surinder, who was a kitchen assistant at a food court in Prangin Mall here, was rushed to Penang Hospital after she was hit on the head with a crash helmet, by a drunken man, alleged to have been her lover.

    The man, aged 55, had hit her after a lover’s tiff in Persiaran Bayan Indah.
    On Monday, Surinder died after succumbing to brain injuries as a result of the assault.

    She was buried at a Muslim burial ground at Jelutong here in the afternoon.

    The reports of Surinder’s death went viral with many members of the Sikh community questioning her alleged sudden conversion when her identification card still labelled her as a Sikh.

    Explaining, Nazirah, who appeared physically weak, said Surinder had been reciting the kalimah shahadah (declaration of faith) for a long time now.

    “When we pray, she would pray with us. In fact, two weeks ago, she met with our religious leader and told him that she wanted to be buried together with her family members, her deceased father Kirpal Singh @ Kurban Khan and brothers Narinder Singh @ Irfan Khan and Balvinder Singh @ Abdullah, if anything happened to her.

    “The only mistake she made was failing to register as a convert. She had planned to register but probably thought she had time to do so,” she said with tears in her eyes.

    Nazirah said she was also saddened by claims circulating online about Surinder and her family.

    “It is disheartening to see such bad things being said about my daughter.

    “Surinder is a very good and responsible daughter. She took care of me very well, and now I have lost her,” she lamented.

    She also disputed claims that Surinder was in a relationship with the man, believed to be a contractor.

    “We knew the suspect, who was a close friend of my late son Abdullah. I treated him as as ‘anak angkat’ (adopted son).
    “However, Surinder did not like him as he was a drug addict. She would scold me for letting him visit the house,” she said, wiping her tears with her headscarf.

    Nazirah said she believed the suspect had “done something” or “charmed” her into giving her money as Surinder had shown a 180 degree shift in her attitude by going missing two days before her death.

    “We think she was with the suspect the two days she was missing. We don’t know why she went missing,” she said.

    Meanwhile, Surinder’s brother Balbir Singh @ Imran Khan, 47, said he had lodged several police reports over the disturbances that his family had suffered since Surinder’s death, including one against the Sikh community.

    Earlier, Penang Sikh Youth Association adviser T. Harjinder Singh said they found the circumstances around Surinder’s conversion suspicious.

    “There is no proof in black and white about the conversion. If the authorities can prove that she was indeed a Muslim, we will leave the matter to rest.”

  3. Saying two lines of shahadah is not a licensed that you’re converted to Islam and become a Muslim!!..for instance if you really want to convert,first you must register with a authorised islamic department by Jakim. Then they will asked about your family situation, next yourself why you are interested in and ect,ect… and after they are satisfied with your explanation,they will proceed with this shahadah on you..that all..

  4. still the deceased wishes must be protected , she was in the age of majority thus capable of her own choice . the sikhs have done the right thing to investigate this matter to come to the truth . just because member of the family says she has converted does not mean she has , under these circumstances a proper investigation must be done and if she has converted then she has converted and the matter rest there .

  5. Gursharan can you 100% confirm that she was a Muslim?That is all these Sikhs are asking.Show proof.Nothing wrong with that.
    The main question is can the Mufti declare any deceased as Muslim without any official record or proof?

    If you are so against anyone standing up for something why don’t you become our “self styled protector”?
    It’s people like you with crab mentality are useless to anyone and bark like mad dogs when anyone else tries to get something done.
    Shame on you gursharan.

  6. In my opinion the body should be left wherever it is now and not be disturbed as nothing good is going to come out of removing the body.It has come out that she was in a relationship with her Muslim murderer and wasn’t active in the local Gurudwara so the chances of her having any faith in the Sikh religion seems very slim.
    The issue of contention should be does the Mufti has the powers to declare anyone as ‘Muslim’ without any official documentation and relying only on word of mouth?

  7. When mother and brother confirm the daughter converted to Islam then why are some self styled protectors of Sikhism showing concern and creating all the confusion is beyond me.

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