Pokémon GO players in Kedah, you might wanna think again before playing the game.
The Kedah Fatwa Council has declared the augmented reality game as “haram” to all Muslims in the state. Kedah Mufti Datuk Sheikh Muhamad Baderudin Ahmad said that it was declared “haram” to prevent people from playing it as “it could bring harm to them”.
The decision was made during a meeting at the office of the Kedah Mufti in Anak Bukit yesterday (Wednesday, 10th August). Baderudin said that the ruling wasn’t made rashly, but was decided upon after consulting several other fatwa councils in the country and Muslim scholars overseas, as well as those from the Al-Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt.
Regarding the ruling, the mufti said that the game is a “threat” to the Muslim faith and “feared that mosques would be used by players to catch the Pokémon characters”.
He explained, “We are worried that this game will have a negative impact on children as they may believe Pokémon can make magic while only Allah are capable of things beyond our ability.”
The committee would also recommend the Kedah Islamic Affairs Department (JAIK) to include the dangers of playing Pokémon GO in Friday sermons and to put signs around mosques telling players to keep out of the place.
To further deter the public from playing the game, the mufti also wants the government and related authorities to ban the game from being downloaded and played in Malaysia. Citing high security places such as army camps, the Kedah mufti said that the country’s safety and security could be compromised if people trespassed the places just to catch Pokémons.