HINDU BUSINESSMAN QUESTION HILTON PJ'S PAYA SERAI RESTAURANT HALAL CERTIFICATION FOLLOWING A NEGLICENCE SUIT
JULY 24, 2019 @ 5.42PM
A Hindu businessman who filed a negligence suit against Hilton Petaling Jaya for serving salmon fish contaminated with beef, has questioned the hotel's Paya Serai restaurant halal certification following his appeal for trial at the Shah Alam Sessions Court today.
The appeal was made by lawyer Zawharul Haq Abdul Rahman who is representing Datuk Ganesalingam Kanageretnam against the Sessions Court’s decision to strike out the suit in January this year.
The respondent; namely Hilton Petaling Jaya had made an application to strike out the claim on grounds that it discloses no reasonable cause of action, it is scandalous, frivolous or vexatious, it may prejudice, embarrass or delay the fair trial of the action and is an abuse of the process of the court.
Based on the statement of claim, Ganesalingam who was a frequent customer to the Paya Serai restaurant in the hotel had on several occasions raised the matter on beef being served in the same food warmer as other food.
On one occasion, he then alleged that he felt nauseous and vomited upon realizing that the salmon fish that he had consumed was served inside the same food warmer as a beef dish.
Ganesalingam is now claiming from Hilton Petaling Jaya for a public apology and damages deemed fit.
The Sessions Court had earlier allowed the hotel management to strike out the case pursuant to Order 18 Rule 19 of the Rules of Court 2012 on the grounds that the plaintiff had failed to produce any evidence to show that the hotel management had broken the law by serving beef dish and any legislations which prohibits the defendant from serving beef alongside other food.
Ganesalingam; in reply had stated that he was of Hindu religion and that Hilton Petaling Jaya had refrained from serving pork in a similar manner to cater to Muslims which clearly shows that the hotel management is aware of the sensitivities involving the belief of an individual. He made further reference to the first National Principle (Rukun Negara) – namely to Believe in God (Kepercayaan kepada Tuhan).
Meanwhile, the respondent in their written submission stated that the hotel management had at all times complied with the ‘Halal’ standards of serving food of which they are bound in order to comply with the requirements of being a ‘Halal’ certified restaurant and is not required to take into consideration the personal principles and standards of how the plaintiff wish for food to be served.
When contacted, Ganesalingam questioned how could the Paya Serai restaurant be 'Halal Certified’ as they served alcohol. He then pointed to the ehalal directory on www.halal.gov.my under the heading: 'Senarai Hotel & Resort Yang Mendapat Sijil Halal Malaysia Jakim (Sijil Masih Sah)', which shows that there were four halal certificates that were issued to Hilton Petaling Jaya on March 1, 2018 valid to February 28, 2020. Paya Serai restaurant was among the four which was listed as having a 'Halal Certificate'.
While the restaurant did not serve pork to cater for the majority of the population in Malaysia – the Muslims, he questioned why the hotel management could not do the same to meet the needs of other religions?
Globally, cattle are considered sacred in Hinduism and Buddhism.
The court’s decision has been scheduled for August 19.
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