Kelantan shop fined over 'sexy' posters

PETALING JAYA • A non-Muslim watch retailer has been summoned by the Kota Baru Municipal Council (MPKB) over two "sexy" posters, including one of actress Aishwarya Rai - an "offence" he has supposedly committed more than 10 times since the 1990s.

Swee Cheong Watch & Pen Co owner Lee Kum Chuan said he was ordered to pay fines even before he started operating the shop in Aeon Mall, which opened in April. He runs two other similar outlets at KB Mall and Tesco in Kota Baru.

"When I went to MPKB to apply for a business permit for the new shop (at Aeon Mall), I was told to settle the old fines for the same offence committed in KB Mall.

"I was hit with a total RM2,000 (S$668) in fines but the amount was reduced to RM400. I had to pay the sum before I could get the new permit," said Mr Lee, adding that he has had to pay fines of several hundred ringgit about 10 times since the 1990s.

MPKB enforcement officers raided his shop in Aeon Mall on Monday.

Mr Lee was ordered to take down the posters, one showing the famous Bollywood star and the other of a couple of models, by Aug 1.

The outfits in the posters were deemed too sexy by the council. "The posters were supplied by our manufacturers," said Mr Lee.

According to MPKB's terms of business permits, owners are not allowed to display sexy photographs at their shops.

Kelantan MCA secretary Lua Choon Hann said what was happening on the ground proved that Parti Islam SeMalaysia was merely paying lip service when it said hudud laws would not affect non-Muslims.

Mr Lua also pointed out that four years ago, the council had taken action against hairdressers in Kota Baru for attending to clients of the opposite sex.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 28, 2016, with the headline 'Kelantan shop fined over 'sexy' posters'. Print Edition | Subscribe