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Malaysian King Objects to Bad Press
By Ian Stewart

3/1/2001 1:37 am Wed

Sumber: atau

From The Australian
29th December 2000

Malaysian king objects to bad press

By Ian Stewart in Kuala Lumpur

MALAYSIAN newspapers have received a royal reprimand from the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, or king, after he objected to reports of a nightclub row involving one of his family.

The king, Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah, took exception to his name being mentioned in connection with an alleged assault on one of his grandsons, a prince.
The 20-year-old prince is said to have later beaten his alleged attacker while the man was held by police.

The king normally has little to say publicly outside formal messages on ceremonial occasions, but he issued a statement to the media through his private secretary, Mohamed Yasin Yunos, with an imperious, monarchical tone.

Mr Yasin said he had been commanded by King Salahuddin to convey his displeasure over newspaper reports that "linked His Majesty's name" to the assault case.

He confirmed that the person involved was Tengku (Prince) Shakirinal, but said the king objected to the young man being identified as his grandson.

"In future, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has commanded that his name not be linked to undesirable news such as this."

The newspapers had reported "a grandson of a sultan" was attacked by bouncers at a Kuala Lumpur discotheque after they refused to let him enter the club with his under-age brother.

Police charged Manivanan Punusamy, 24, in a magistrate's court with "voluntarily causing hurt to Tengku Shakirinal Amir Mahmood Ismail in front of the Backroom Disco . . . around 4.30am on December 16".

Mr Manivanan opted to stand trial and was released on bail. If found guilty, he faces a maximum jail sentence of three years.

His lawyer, Gobind Singh Deo, asked the court to record that he had applied to another magistrate to allow his client to lodge a police report in relation to his claim that he had been beaten by Prince Shakirinal while held in police custody.

"This was something serious, as a member of the public had entered the police station and assaulted the accused," Mr Gobind told the court.

He said that whether it was the prince who attacked Mr Manivanan would be established at the trial.

Until seven years ago, members of Malaysian royalty were immune from prosecution under national law. They lost their immunity, together with other privileges, in a bitter constitutional battle in 1993 after the Sultan of Johor assaulted a hockey coach in his palace.

Each of Malaysia's nine traditional rulers serves as king under a rotational system. The current monarch is the Sultan of Selangor.