Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Family - Tale of Hosni Mubarak's Family

The story of Hosni Mubarak, the former Egyptian president, his wife Suzanne and their two sons is a tale of politics, power, ambition and greed.

In a tale of politics, power and greed, this two-part series examines the Mubarak family.
As Hosni Mubarak, the former Egyptian president, lies on his deathbed, The Family offers a fresh perspective on the history and inner workings of the man, his wife and his family.

The story of Hosni Mubarak - along with his wife Suzanne and their two sons - is a tale of politics, power, ambition and greed.
It is a story of a humble birth and a rise through the ranks of the Egyptian air force, culminating in a 30-year reign over the fulcrum of the Arab world - all set against the backdrop of a tumultuous region.

The first of these two-hour documentaries shows Mubarak as the unassuming and loyal lieutenant of Gamal Abdel Nasser and Anwar al-Sadat who found himself thrust into the top job - brought to power by a twist of fate.

The second shows Mubarak as president, developing into a dictator and surrounded by a family with an insatiable appetite for self-interest.

This is a tale of how power corrupts, of how a once-modest man turned into an all-powerful pharaoh who rode roughshod over the wishes of his subjects - and of a dramatic downfall.

The Family includes testimony from those who served with Mubarak as well as members of his family and inner circle and photographs from the family album.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Chinese Newcomers Find a Hostile Welcome in Singapore

In Singapore, Vitriol Against Chinese Newcomers

Sim Chi Yin for The New York Times
Construction workers from mainland China at Renewal Christian Church in Singapore, which offers meals and English lessons to those far from home.


SINGAPORE — It was bad enough that Ma Chi was driving well above the speed limit on a downtown boulevard when he blew through a red light and struck a taxi, killing its two occupants and himself. It didn’t help, either, that he was at the wheel of a $1.4 million Ferrari that early morning in May, or that the woman in the passenger seat was not his wife.
But what really set off a wave of outrage across this normally decorous island-state is the fact that Mr. Ma, a 31-year-old financial investor, carried a Chinese passport, having arrived in Singapore four years earlier. 

The accident, captured by the dashboard camera of another taxi, has uncorked long-stewing fury against the surge of new arrivals from China, part of a government-engineered immigration push that has almost doubled Singapore’s population to 5.2 million since 1990. About a million of those newcomers arrived in the past decade, drawn by financial incentives and a liberal visa policy aimed at counteracting Singapore’s famously low birthrate. 

Tensions over immigration bedevil many nations, but what makes the clash here particularly striking is that most of Singapore’s population was already ethnic Chinese, many of them the progeny of earlier generations of Chinese immigrants. The paradox is not lost on Alvin Tan, the artistic director of a community theater company that takes on thorny social issues.
“Mainlanders may look like us, but they aren’t like us,” said Mr. Tan, who is of mixed Malay-Chinese descent and does not speak Mandarin. “Singaporeans look down on mainlanders as country bumpkins, and they look down on us because we can’t speak proper Chinese.” 


One thing mainland Chinese notice about Singapore is that is it much more law-abiding and strict than China. Crossing the street at traffic lights is the norm and jaywalking is an offense. Mainland Chinese often ask Singaporeans, “Is there caning for all criminal offenses?”
Credit: Sim Chi Yin for The New York Times

These days, mainland Chinese get blamed for driving up real-estate prices, stealing the best jobs and clogging the roads with flashy European sports cars. Coffee shop patrons gripe that they need Mandarin to order their beloved Kopi-C (coffee sweetened with evaporated milk). True or not, tales of Chinese women stealing away married men have become legion.
“Singaporeans woke up one day to find the trains more crowded with people who speak Mandarin, and they aren’t handling it very well,” said Jolovan Wham, executive of an organization that helps foreign laborers, many of whom face exploitive work conditions. “The amount of xenophobia we’re seeing is just appalling.” 

In the days after the accident, social media here were awash in commentary that blamed mainlanders like Mr. Ma for upending Singapore’s gracious, well-mannered ways. Bloggers called him “spoiled and corrupt,” wrongly identified him as the son of a powerful Beijing official and suggested the police prosecute him posthumously. Detractors created a mock Facebook page, since removed, that brimmed with ugly invective. 

“Good riddance and enjoy hell you piece of mainland trash,” read one of the tamer postings.
Singapore’s government, which has long relied on strict media and sedition laws to maintain ethnic and religious harmony in a multicultural society, has become alarmed by the venom, much of it coming from middle-class Singaporeans. In a recent speech to a parliamentary committee, Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean defended the country’s immigration policies, saying foreign workers — both educated and unskilled — were indispensable to counterbalance a rapidly aging population and to maintain the momentum of Singapore’s roaring economy. 

“Quite naturally, we expect that our new immigrants should adapt to our values and norms, and we get upset if they have not yet done so,” he said, speaking in English, Singapore’s lingua franca. “However, I do agree that we should not let recent reactions towards new immigrants and foreigners undo the good job that we have done in building a strong and cohesive society out of people from many lands.” 

More than a third of Singapore’s residents are now foreign-born. While the government has refused to release figures on immigrant origins, officials are quick to stress that the majority of new citizens came from countries other than China, with nearly half from Southeast Asia.
In private, they also note that many of the more outlandishly wealthy arrivistes are just as likely to hail from London, Dubai or New Delhi as from China. Among them is Eduardo Saverin, the Brazilian-born co-founder of Facebook whose decision to trade his American passport for Singaporean residency provoked a tempest in Washington this year. 

The issue nonetheless looms large on the political landscape, and many analysts say anger over immigration contributed to the governing People’s Action Party’s unexpected losses in last year’s parliamentary elections. 

The government has already started to adjust the spigot. The number of new permanent residents has decreased by nearly two-thirds since 2008, when 80,000 applications were accepted, while the number of people granted citizenship has remained level at about 18,500 a year, according to the National Population and Talent Division. Despite the growing animus, Singapore remains the third most desirable immigration destination for affluent Chinese after the United States and Canada, according to a survey by the Bank of China and the Hurun Report, which compiles an annual list of the richest Chinese. 

Although the furor has largely been confined to the anonymity of the Internet, Singaporeans staged a rare public protest against new immigrants last summer after a family from China complained about the curry-laden odors wafting from an ethnic Indian neighbor’s apartment. A campaign organized via Facebook drew tens of thousands of supporters who all vowed to cook a curry dinner on the same day. 

There was another wave of schadenfreude in March, after a Chinese student at the National University of Singapore was fined 3,000 Singapore dollars, or about $2,390, for referring to Singaporeans as dogs in a posting on a Chinese microblog service. The student, who was also forced to perform three months of community service and to return a semester’s worth of financial aid, said he was upset by the glares from elderly Singaporeans he accidentally jostled on the sidewalk. 

The tenor of the debate has unnerved some Chinese immigrants, and angered others. Wang Quancheng, the chairman of the Hua Yuan Association, the largest organization representing mainlanders, said the government was not doing enough to help integrate new arrivals, but he also blamed Singaporeans for their intolerance and said many were simply jealous that so many Chinese immigrate here with money in their pockets. 

“Of course, the new arrivals are rich or else the government would have to feed them,” he said. “Some locals are very lazy and live off the government. When new immigrants come, they think it is competition, taking away their rice bowls.” 

Actually, the typical Singaporean is far better off than the average person in China. Thousands of Chinese students live here, too, some with mothers who came along to support their children by illegally working as maids, or worse. In Geylang, Singapore’s red-light district, Chinese women can sometimes outnumber the stalwarts from Thailand and the Philippines. 

Many Chinese do successfully assimilate. According to official figures, 30 percent of all Singaporean marriages involve a citizen and a foreigner, up from 23 percent a decade ago. But the passage of time does not necessarily narrow the cultural gap. 

Yang Mu, a Beijing-born economist who moved here in 1992 and became a citizen three years later, acknowledges a host of superficial differences, saying he finds locals somewhat aloof, more likely to work late and less likely to spend the night commiserating over stiff drinks. 

Unlike Singaporeans, people from China, he said, would never split a dinner tab.
“I’ve voted in four elections now, and it is great to live in a country where you can trust people and trust the government,” said Mr. Yang, 66, who formed a local charity that teaches English to Chinese migrants. “I still don’t feel Singaporean,” he added. “The truth is, when I retire, I’ll probably move back to China.” 

Patrick Zuo and Jacob Fromer contributed research.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Baby of the year

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THE desperate parents of a NINE STONE three-year-old have told how they can't make the giant toddler diet because they are scared of him.
Lu Hao, from China, is dangerously overweight, and at 9st 6lb is FIVE TIMES as heavy as other boys his age. He is getting so big his family are frightened of him‚ and have given up trying to stop the youngster from gorging on huge plates of ribs and rice. His parents claim he throws vicious tantrums if he doesn't get third or fourth helpings of dinner.

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Huge ... Lu Hao's dad struggles to pick him up

And mum Chen Huan from Dashan, Guangdong Province, admits: "We have to let him be as if we don't feed him he will cry nonstop." She said she has tried to cut down his meals in the past, but despite her best efforts he still managed to put on whopping 1.5st in the last year alone.

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Sad ... Lu Hao struggles to play without getting out of breath

He has already been banned from nursery over fears his size might be a danger to other children, and usually plays alone at home. But moving around is becoming tougher and tougher for the toddler, whose weight means he gets out of breath easily.

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Struggle ... youngster enjoys playing, but gets tired easily

Ironically when Lu Hao was born he was underweight, at 5.7lbs, but he started piling on the pounds at three months old, and hasn't stopped since. Dad, Lu Yuncheng, who struggles to pick him up, said: "His appetite is so good that for a meal he can eat three big bowls of rice, even larger than I and his mother."

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Worrying ... Lu Hao is already five times heavier than other boys his age

Last year Lu Hao's worried parents took him to see specialists at the Guangdong Children's Hospital. Doctors there said they think it is possible his weight gain could be down to a hormone disorder.

Hungry ... toddler won't stop eating and throws vicious tantrums if he isn't given food

Dr Lu Hong said at the time: "He is not just overweight but very tall as well so we may be able to treat him if it really is hormonal. "But he cannot remain like this or his heart will never stand the strain." A recent government survey showed there are 60million obese people in China, with the number doubling between 1992 and 2010.

Pertanyaan Dari Dr. Mahathir kepada Saudara Hilal Asyraf

Untuk bacaan dan renungan bersama.

HUKUM HUDUD - Tun Dr Mahathir

14 Mar 2012 141 Comments Written by chedet
1. Saya ucap berbanyak terima kasih kepada adik Hilal Asyraf (mungkin cucu lebih tepat kerana saya sudah mencecah 87 tahun Masehi – iaitu 90 tahun mengikut Hijrah) kerana membuat teguran terhadap ucapan saya di UNIMAS baru-baru ini.
2. Sebelum saya menjelaskan maksud saya di dalam ucapan itu, saya harap adik Asyraf dapat menjawab secara ringkas (Ya atau Tidak) beberapa soalan yang ingin saya tanya kepada adik.
3. Soalan :
i) Punca ajaran agama Islam ialah Al-Quran, Hadith, fatwa, ajaran ulama’-ulama’ dan guru-guru agama. Diantara punca-punca ini yang mana satukah yang diutamakan?
ii) Sekiranya terdapat perlanggaran atau percanggahan antara hadith, fatwa, pendapat ulama’ dan guru-guru agama dengan apa yang terdapat dalam Al-Quran, apakah kita harus tolak Al-Quran (terutama ayat-ayat yang jelas) dan terima hadith, fatwa dan lain-lain?
iii) Ada pihak yang mendakwa bahawa Al-Bukhari telah mengkaji sebanyak 600,000 hadith tetapi menerima hanya 7000 sebagai sahih.
iv) Apakah kesahihan hadith-hadith ini semuanya sama dengan sahih pengkaji hadith lain termasuk Muslim, Tarmizi dan lain-lain. Apakah kita harus tolak kajian-kajian lain dari Bukhari?
v) Apakah ingatan manusia lebih tepat dan kekal dari catitan, seperti wahyu dari Allah s.w.t. kepada Nabi Muhammad s.a.w. dicatit, kemudian dibukukan sebagai Al-Quran.
vi) Bukhari membuat kajian hadithnya 200 tahun selepas wafat Nabi. Apakah orang pertama yang melihat atau mendengar Nabi bersabda mencatat apa yang dilihat dan didengar dan catitan ini disimpan sehingga Bukhari mengkajinya? Atau apakah Bukhari bergantung kepada riwayat yang diperturunkan melalui beberapa generasi sehingga sampai kepada Al-Bukhari?
(Di sini jangan mula cap saya sebagai anti-hadith. Saya pegang kuat kepada hadith asalkan ia tidak berbeza, bercanggah dan menafi ayat-ayat Al-Quran. Saya sedar saya tak mungkin tahu bagaimana sembahyang jika saya pegang semata-mata kepada ayat-ayat dalam Al-Quran. Menuduh seseorang itu anti-hadith seperti menuduh seseorang itu kafir adalah cara mereka yang tidak dapat pertahan kefahaman dan pendapat mereka).
vii) Tuhan menjadikan manusia berbeza dengan haiwan kerana manusia diberi akal fikiran. Apakah agama Islam melarang manusia dari mengguna akal dan berfikir?
Saya menunggu jawapan daripada adik Hilal Asyraf supaya dapat saya betulkan diri saya.

Jawapan Hilal Asyraf kepada Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Posted by: Hilal Asyraf Posted date: March 14, 2012
Assalamu’alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barokatuh.
Alhamdulillah, syukur ke hadrat Allah SWT, diizinkan saya mengarang warkah ini. Semoga Allah SWT memandu kita semua ke arah kebenaran, dan sentiasa meletakkan kita agar sentiasa lurus berada di atas jalanNya.
Ini adalah warkah jawapan saya kepada Tun Dr Mahathir yang menyuakan beberapa soalan kepada saya di dalam blognya pada link berikut: http://chedet.cc/blog/?p=718
Sukalah saya mendahulukan terima kasih saya, sebagai seorang rakyat biasa, kerana Tun Dr Mahathir sudi memberikan respon kepada nota saya. Yang nyatanya saya sangka, tidak sampai kepada Tun. Hal ini kerana ramai lagi orang lain memberikan respon kepada ucapan Tun berkenaan Hudud tersebut. Apa-apa hal pun, saya berbesar hati atas keterbukaan Tun ini, dengan izin Allah SWT.
Saya Muhammad Hilal Asyraf bin Abd Razak bin Kaprawi. Tahun ini berumur 23 tahun mengikut tahun masihi. Ya benar, saya taraf cucunda Tun, yang nyata usianya sudah menjengah 90 tahun dalam tahun hijrah. Saya merupakan pelajar tahun akhir di Universiy of Yarmouk , Jordan dalam pengkhususan Usuluddin. Jika tiada aral melintang, saya akan menamatkan pengajian saya di semester ini. Saya juga, mengasaskan website ini(LangitIlahi.Com), dan menulis beberapa buah buku.
Tun Dr Mahathir yang dikasihi kerana Allah,
Maafkan saya atas intro yang panjang. Kini saya pergi menjawab soalan-soalan yang dilontarkan oleh Tun di dalam blog Tun. Namun suka saya meminta maaf, jika saya tidak mampu menjawab seringkas yang dipinta. Tetapi saya berusaha keras untuk meringkaskan penulisan saya.
Soalan 1 –  Punca ajaran agama Islam ialah Al-Quran, Hadith, fatwa, ajaran ulama’-ulama’ dan guru-guru agama. Diantara punca-punca ini yang mana satukah yang diutamakan?
Izinkan saya memperbaiki statement – “punca ajaran agama Islam ialah Al-Quran, Hadith, Fatwa, ajaran ulama’-ulama’ dan guru-guru agama.”
Sebenarnya, ‘punca’ ajaran agama Islam adalah Al-Quran dan Hadith sahaja. Selebihnya, seperti fatwa, ajaran ulama’ atau guru-guru, itu adalah perkara yang terbit dari kefahaman mereka terhadap Al-Quran dan Hadith.
Bila ditanyakan yang mana satukah yang patut diutamakan, maka saya jawab:
Al-Quran dan Hadith. Kedua-duanya diutamakan, pada taraf yang sama. Kerana kewujudan Hadith, yakni sunnah nabawiyah, adalah sebagai ‘penjelasan’ kepada ayat-ayat Al-Quran. Kerana itu Allah SWT berfirman:
“(Kami utuskan Rasul-rasul itu) membawa keterangan-keterangan yang jelas nyata (yang membuktikan kebenaran mereka) dan Kitab-kitab Suci (yang menjadi panduan); dan kami pula turunkan kepadamu (wahai Muhammad) Al-Quran yang memberi peringatan, supaya engkau menerangkan kepada umat manusia akan apa yang telah diturunkan kepada mereka, dan supaya mereka memikirkannya. (Setelah diterangkan yang demikian) maka adakah orang-orang yang merancang dan melakukan kejahatan-kejahatan itu merasa aman daripada ditimbuskan oleh Allah akan mereka ke dalam bumi, atau mereka didatangi azab dari arah yang mereka tidak menyedarinya?” Surah An-Nahl ayat 44-45.
Begitulah juga dinyatakan di dalam Surah An-Najm ayat 2-4. Surah Al-Hasyr ayat 7.
Dan berkenaan Al-Quran, nyata Allah SWT berfirman:
“Sesungguhnya Al-Quran ini memberi petunjuk ke jalan yang amat betul (ugama Islam), dan memberikan berita yang mengembirakan orang-orang yang beriman yang mengerjakan amal-amal soleh, bahawa mereka beroleh pahala yang besar. Dan bahawa orang-orang yang tidak beriman kepada hari akhirat, Kami sediakan bagi mereka azab seksa yang tidak terperi sakitnya.” Surah Al-isra’ ayat 9-10.
Juga wujud penegasan ini dalam banyak tempat yang lain di dalam Al-Quran, contohnya di dalam Surah Al-Baqarah ayat 1-2, An-Nisa’ ayat 174-175, Surah Al-Maidah ayat 15-16 dan lain-lain.
Tun Dr Mahathir yang saya harapkan berada dalam rahmat Allah,
Soalan 2 –  Sekiranya terdapat perlanggaran atau percanggahan antara hadith, fatwa, pendapat ulama’ dan guru-guru agama dengan apa yang terdapat dalam Al-Quran, apakah kita harus tolak Al-Quran (terutama ayat-ayat yang jelas) dan terima hadith, fatwa dan lain-lain?
Berkenaan soalan ini, pertamanya izinkan saya jelaskan berkenaan percanggahan hadith dengan Al-Quran. Sesungguhnya Tun yang saya kasihi, apabila Allah SWT telah berfirman di dalam ayat-ayatNya di atas berkenaan Rasulullah SAW itu tindakannya adalah wahyu, maka tiadalah hadith yang sohih, bercanggahan dengan ayat-ayat Al-Quran.
Sekiranya kita menjumpai ta’arudh(perlanggaran, percanggahan) ini, di antara hadith sohih dengan ayat Al-Quran, maka hendaklah kita kaji semula apakah sebabnya. Dan biasanya, percanggahan itu bukanlah percanggahan. Tetapi antaranya disebabkan:
1.         Silap dalam periwayatan hadith
2.        Ayat Al-Quran itu sudah di’nasakh’(mansuh) kan hukumnya, tetapi tidak di’nasakh’(mansuh) kan bacaannya.
3.        Atau Rasulullah SAW melakukan/membenarkan/melarang perkara tersebut, sebelum ayat Al-Quran turun melarang/membenarkan.
Jadi bila ditanya kepada saya, mana yang patut diutamakan, maka saya akan jawab:
Al-Quran dan hadith. Bersama-sama.
Kalau berlaku pencanggahan antara Al-Quran dan hadith, maka nyatakan hadithnya, dan nyatakan ayat Al-Quran yang mana, kemudian kita periksa mengikut ilmu asbabul nuzul(sebab-sebab turunnya ayat Al-Quran), dan periwayatan hadith.
Tun Dr Mahathir yang dikasihi kerana Allah,
Soalan 3 – Ada pihak yang mendakwa bahawa Al-Bukhari telah mengkaji sebanyak 600,000 hadith tetapi menerima hanya 7000 sebagai sahih.
Benar. Dan perlu diketahui bahawa Imam Al-Bukhari(Abu ‘Abdullah Muhammad bin Isma’il Al-Bukhariy) menamakan Kitab Sohih Bukhari itu dengan “Jami’ Musnad As-Sohih Al-Mukhtasar Min Umur Rasulillah SAW”.  Al-Mukhtasar ini bermaksud “ringkasan”. Imam Al-Bukhari memasukkan sekitar 7,000 hadith ini ke dalam kitab tersebut kerana 7,000 hadith ini mencukupi pada pendapatnya, untuk manusia memahami bagaimana mahu berurusan dengan Islam sebagai cara hidup.
Dan Imam Al-Bukhari sendiri menyatakan: “Aku keluarkan untuk (isi)kitab ini daripada 600,000 hadith, dan aku jadikannya sebagai hujjah antara aku dan Allah SWT.”
Berkata Ibrahim ibn Mu’qol: “Aku mendengar Muhammad bin Ismail berkata: Tiadalah aku masukkan ke dalam kitabku As-Sohih ini melainkan yang sohih. Dan aku tinggalkan(tidak masukkan) banyak hadith sohih yang lain agar tidak menjadi panjang(kitab itu tidak menjadi terlalu tebal)”
Berkata Imam Al-Bukhari: “Tiadalah aku keluarkan(yakni meriwayatkan) di dalam kitab ini melainkan yang sohih, dan apa yang aku tinggalkan dari hadith sohih yang lain ada banyak.”
Kerana itu apabila Imam Al-Bukhari menamakan kitabnya “As-Sohih Al-Mukhtasar Min Umur Rasulillah SAW”, maka itu menjadi dalil bahawa dia berpendapat hadith-hadith tersebut sudah cukup bagi manusia mengamalkan dan memahami Islam yang sebenar. Tetapi tidaklah dia menutup peluang orang lain untuk meriwayatkan hadith sohih yang lain.
Ini saya dapati dari Kitab Al-Wadhih Fi Manahij Al-Muhaddithin karangan Dr Yaasir Asy-Syimaali.
Tun Dr Mahathir yang saya kasihi kerana Allah,
Soalan 4 - Apakah kesahihan hadith-hadith ini semuanya sama dengan sahih pengkaji hadith lain termasuk Muslim, Tarmizi dan lain-lain. Apakah kita harus tolak kajian-kajian lain dari Bukhari?
Kalau yang Tun maksudkan di sini adalah ‘sama taraf kesohihan’nya, maka itu bergantung kepada Al-Jarah Wa Ta’dil terhadap hadith tersebut. Menggunakan teknik Jarah Wa Ta’dil ini, maka periwayatan akan dikaji semula untuk melihat kesohihannya. Baik sohih dari segi sanad perawi, mahupun sohih dari segi matan(sebutan hadith) itu.
Tetapi kalau Tun mahu tanya fasal ‘Syarat Sohih Hadith’ yang dikenakan oleh perawi-perawi ini sebelum memasukkan ke dalam kitab mereka, maka telah diakui zaman berzaman bahawa syarat yang dikenakan oleh Imam Bukhari dan Imam Muslim adalah paling ketat sekali.
Imam Bukhari mengenakan syarat-syarat berikut:
1.        Memenuhi Syarat hadith Sohih yang disepakati Ulama’
  • Sanadnya bersambung.
  • Perawinya adil(soleh, bertaqwa, dipercayai)
  • Perawinya dobit(tidak nyanyuk, tidak lupa)
  • Tidak ada syaz(hadith yang diriwayatkan tidak bertentangan)
  • Tidak terdapat ‘illlah(yakni kecacatan/kesamaran yang menyebabkan hadith itu tidak diterima)
2. Subbut Al-Liqa’ (terbukti perawi itu telah bertemu dengan perawi sebelumnya)
3. Melihat tahap penguasaan murid di sisi syaikhnya(apakah murid yang bagus penguasaannya, atau tidak)
4. Hendaklah perawi itu masyhur sebagai yang tekun menuntut ilmu hadith.(maksudnya, perawi itu memang dikenali sebagai yang rajin menuntut hadith)
Manakala imam-imam yang lain, ada yang membenarkan hadith dho’if wujud di dalam kitabnya. Ini bukanlah hendak menyatakan Imam-imam tersebut kurang mulia atau kurang hebat daripada Imam Al-Bukhari dan Imam Muslim. Tetapi hendak menyatakan, tujuan penulisan kitab mereka adalah berbeza. Dan perlu diketahui bahawa ulama’-ulama’ yang memasukkan hadith-hadith sedemikian, mereka memasukkannya dengan amanah. Yakni menyatakan para perawinya agar boleh diperiksa orang terkemudian selepas mereka.
Dan untuk isu mana yang lebih patut diambil sebagai rujukan, setakat ini sememangnya ulama’-ulama’ telah menjadikan Imam Al-Bukhari dan Imam Muslim sebagai rujukan utama. Biasa akan dikatakan – “Perawi ini melepasi syarat asy-syaikhain”. Itu bermakna, perawi itu melepasi syarat yang dikenakan Bukhari dan Muslim.
Namun untuk mengambil hadith-hadith daripada Imam lain, tiada masalah selagi mana ianya memenuhi syarat hadith sohih.
Perkara ini Tun, dibahaskan dengan amat-amat detail dalam ilmu Jarah Wa Ta’dil(kritikan dan pujian) terhadap hadith-hadith, di dalam Kitab Ar-Rijal(kitab yang menceritakan perihal perawi-perawi, sejarah mereka, kedudukan mereka dalam dunia periwayatan hadith) dan sebagainya.
Tun Dr Mahathir yang saya kasihi kerana Allah,
Soalan 5 – Apakah ingatan manusia lebih tepat dan kekal dari catitan, seperti wahyu dari Allah s.w.t. kepada Nabi Muhammad s.a.w. dicatit, kemudian dibukukan sebagai Al-Quran.
“Lebih tepat” itu pada saya sangat subjektif. Sebab, tidak semestinya apa yang dicatit itu betul. Dan tak semestinya juga yang diingati itu lebih tepat dari apa yang tercatat.
Sebab itu Tun, dalam isu pengumpulan, pembukuan Al-Quran dan Hadith, adalah amat-amat-amat ketat saringannya.
Bukan semata-mata dia hafal, dia sebut, maka terus dimasukkan ke dalam catitan. Terus dibukukan. Bahkan, jika kita menelaah kitab-kitab Manahij Al-Muhaddithin(Sistem Para Perawi Hadith), kita akan menjumpai perkara seperti jarah wa ta’dil yang menilai sanad dan matan hadith, kitab Ar-Rijal yang menilai perawi-perawi hadith, syarat hadith sohih,  dan sebagainya, yang jelas menunjukkan ini semua disaring penuh ketat dan teliti.
Kalau Tun nak kata ingatan manusia boleh terganggu dengan ‘lupa’ dan sebagainya, saya akan kata, sebab itu wujud sistem Jarah Wa Ta’dil, Kitab Ar-Rijal, Syarat-syarat hadith sohih, dan sebagainya, untuk memastikan apa yang disampaikan itu terjaga.
Sebentar lagi saya akan nyatakan bahawa hadith juga dicatit. Ada juga yang dihafal. Sama seperti Al-Quran. Ada yang tercatat di pelepah kurma, batu dan sebagainya. Ada juga yang tidak ditulis, tetapi dihafal. Namun sistem pengumpulan yang amat ketat itulah yang menjaga dari apa yang tidak sohih itu terlepas.
Tun Dr Mahathir yang saya kasihi kerana Allah SWT,
Soalan 6 – Bukhari membuat kajian hadithnya 200 tahun selepas wafat Nabi. Apakah orang pertama yang melihat atau mendengar Nabi bersabda mencatat apa yang dilihat dan didengar dan catitan ini disimpan sehingga Bukhari mengkajinya? Atau apakah Bukhari bergantung kepada riwayat yang diperturunkan melalui beberapa generasi sehingga sampai kepada Al-Bukhari?
Sebenarnya Tun, hadith itu ditulis dari zaman Rasulullah SAW lagi. Bukan semata-mata hafalan dan ingatan. Di zaman Rasulullah SAW, antara yang dikhaskan oleh Rasulullah SAW untuk menjadi pencatit hadith baginda adalah: ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amru Radhiallahu’anhuma.
Dinamakan penulisan Hadith ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amru ini sebagai Sohifah As-Soodiqoh.
Antara lain yang wujud adalah Sohifah ‘Ali bin Abi Talib Radhiallahu’anhu.
Dan wujud di dalam Sohih Bukhari dalam Kitabul ‘Ilm bahawa Rasulullah SAW pernah menyuruh agar ditulis pesanan dan ajaran baginda kepada seorang yang berasal dari Yaman.
Dan amat masyhur kita mengetahui bahawa baginda mempunyai penulis surat , dan dihantar surat itu kepada raja-raja di zaman baginda. Ini dinyatakan di dalam Kitab Jaami’ Bayan Al-‘Ilm karangan Ibn Abdul Barr.
Jadi jelas di zaman Rasulullah SAW, hadith-hadith baginda ditulis. Tanpa dinafikan, ada juga yang dihafal.
Kita mendalami ilmu hadith ini dengan memahami bahawa Al-Quran adalah wahyu daripada Allah SWT makna dan lafaz. Manakala hadith adalah maknanya daripada Allah, sedang lafaznya adalah lafaz Rasulullah SAW. Maka, ada sahaja yang meriwayatkannya berdasarkan makna sahaja. Itu pun, semua ini melalui jarah wa ta’dil yang kita nyatakan tadi.
Di zaman Sohabah(para sahabat) pula, wujud tulisan Zaid ibn Thabit RA yang mengumpulkan hadith-hadith berkenaan Fara’idh. Khotib Al-Baghdadi(Abu Bakr Ahmad ibn `Ali ibn Thabit ibn Ahmad ibn Mahdi) juga pernah meriwayatkan daripada Basyir ibn Nuhaik bahawa Basyir berkata: “Aku menulis untuk Abu Hurairah setiap hadith yang aku pelajari daripadanya. Kala aku hendak berpisah dengannya, maka aku membacakan apa yang aku tulis. Kemudian aku nyatakan bahawa ini semua adalah hadith yang aku ambil daripadanya. Abu Hurairah menjawab: Ya.” Khotib Al-Baghdadi, dalam kitabnya, Taqyid Al-Ilm.
Terdapat juga sohifah Jabir ibn Abdullah. Dan para sahabat yang hidup jelas memperturunkan hadith-hadith yang didapati daripada Rasulullah SAW kepada masyarakat di mana mereka hidup.
Dan ini semua tidak mati di situ sahaja. Di Zaman Tabi’in, wujud juga penulisan Hadith, bahkan jadi lebih meluas lagi kerana telah terbukanya banyak wilayah di tangan Islam. Ketika zaman inilah, Khalifah Abdul Aziz ibn Marwan(meninggal pada tahun 85H) mula menyeru agar dikumpulkan hadith secara rasmi. Kemudian usaha ini juga diteruskan oleh Khalifan Umar bin Abdul Aziz di zamannya.
Perkara ini dijelaskan secara detail di dalam kitab-kitab Manahij Al-Muhaddithin. Ini bukanlah maklumat yang boleh kita biarkan begitu sahaja, atau memandangnya dengan sebelah mata semata-mata.
Kemudian, apabila ingin membicarakan perihal Imam Al-Bukhari, bagaimana dia menuntut hadith, dia nyata adalah seorang yang mengembara. 16 tahun dia keluar mengembara bertemu dengan perawi-perawi untuk mengumpulkan hadith-hadith, dalam rangka mengumpulkan yang sohih. Dia bukannya duduk diam di dalam perpustakaan semata-mata, atau menunggu seseorang datang kepadanya menyampaikan buatnya hadith.
Dan sekali lagi saya nyatakan, Imam Al-Bukhari bukannya sekadar dengar, dan terus catit masukkan ke dalam Kitabnya. Dia menyaringnya pula. Ada pula hadith-hadith yang lebih kurang sama, diletakkan sebagai bukti bahawa makna yang dibawa oleh hadith-hadith itu sohih, saling sokong menyokong satu sama lain.
Bahkan, untuk tambah meyakinkan lagi, Imam Al-Bukhari telah memanggil para ulama’ di zamannya untuk menilai Kitab Jami’ Musnad As-Sohih miliknya itu. Antara ulama’ yang menilai adalah ‘Ali ibn Al-Madini, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Yahya Ibn Mu’in dan lain-lain. Mereka memperkemaskannya lagi dan menjadi saksi bahawa apa yang dikumpulkan itu adalah sohih.
Dan bukanlah Imam Al-Bukhari itu terus mati selepas menyelesaikan kitabnya. Dia masih hidup. Didatangi para ulama’, dan keluar ke negeri demi negeri membawa kitabnya. Sekiranya wujud kesalahan dan kecacatan, semestinya kitabnya telah tertolak lebih awal kala kehidupannya.
Tun Dr Mahathir yang saya kasihi,
Soalan 7 – Tuhan menjadikan manusia berbeza dengan haiwan kerana manusia diberi akal fikiran. Apakah agama Islam melarang manusia dari mengguna akal dan berfikir?
Guru saya di dalam bidang Aqidah, bernama ‘Ala Hilat, pernah berkata bahawa Allah SWT menyediakan ayat musytabihat di dalam Al-Quran, sebagai tanda penghormatan Allah SWT kepada akal yang diciptakanNya buat manusia. Ayat musytabihat adalah ruang yang diberikan Allah SWT agar manusia berfikir, menjana pemikirannya sendiri.
Tetapi adalah perlu kita fahami bahawa, tiadalah pemikiran akan timbul sendiri tanpa bantuan. Dan tiadalah pemikiran akan menghala kepada arah yang betul sekiranya tidak mendapat panduan.
Kerana itu, Allah SWT menurunkan ayat-ayat Muhkamat. Yang qat’ie, jelas tidak boleh diubah dan diperbahaskan perlaksanaannya. Hal ini boleh dirujuk dalam Surah Ali Imran ayat 7.
Allah SWT juga beberapa kali menyebut ayat Al-Quran seperti:
“Apakah mereka tidak mendalami/memikirkan Al-Quran?” Surah Muhammad ayat 24.              “Sesungguhnya yang demikian itu mengandungi keterangan-keterangan (yang menimbulkan kesedaran) bagi orang-orang yang berfikir.” Surah Rum ayat 21.
Maka tidaklah Islam melarang kita menggunakan akal kita. Tetapi perlulah kita letakkan akal kita atas landasan sebagaimana yang telah ditetapkan oleh Allah SWT di dalam kitabNya, sebagaimana yang telah ditunjukkan oleh Rasulullah SAW daripada hadith yang sohih yang sampai kepada kita.
Jika Islam melarang kita menggunakan akal, maka tiadalah ulama’-ulama’ terdahulu terfikir untuk mengumpulkan Al-Quran dan mengumpulkan hadith. Tiadalah cendekiawan Islam membuat penemuan-penemuan yang menghidupkan ketamadunan dunia.
Tetapi perlulah pada kebebasan berfikir itu, wujud limitnya. Kerana pemikiran manusia itu terbatas.
Sebagaimana limit yang diletakkan kepada kita, agar tidak membicarakan akan dzat Allah SWT.
Diriwayatkan dari Abu Hurairah radhiyallaahu ‘anhu, dari Rasulullah SAW, beliau bersabda: “Sesungguhnya syaitan mendatangi salah seorang dari kamu, lalu berkata: Siapakah yang telah menciptakan ini ? Siapakah yang telah menciptakan itu ? Hingga syaitan berkata kepadanya: Siapakah yang menciptakan Rabbmu? Jika sudah sampai demikian, maka hendaklah ia berlindung kepada Allah dengan mengucapkan isti’adzah dan berhenti.” Hadith Riwayat Al-Bukhari dan Muslim.
Kerana jelas, makhluk jika mampu memikirkan bagaimana ‘bentuk’ Tuhannya, adalah satu kecacatan kepada Maha Besarnya Tuhan itu. Tidakkah Tun rasa demikian? Ini salah satu bentuk keterbatasan akal manusia. Tidak mampu menjengah kepada perkara-perkara ghaib. Maka Al-Quran dan hadith memandu. Islam benarkan kita terbang seperti layang-layang, tetapi mestilah bertali agar tidak jadi layang-layang yang lepas pergi begitu sahaja, Tun.
Maka begitulah saya melihat Islam mendidik kita berfikir, Tun.
Penutup: Inilah jawapan Saya, Tun Dr Mahathir, yang saya kasihi kerana Allah SWT.
Tun Dr Mahathir yang saya kasihi.
Pada hemat saya Tun, kalau saya diizinkan memberikan buah pandangan, saya kira lebih afdhol dari Tun memfokuskan soalan ini kepada saya, dan membukanya agar diperbincangkan ulama’ luar dan dalam negara. Saya cadangkan Tun menulis soalan-soalan ini di dalam bahasa Inggeris. Pastinya akan mendapat sambutan dan perhatian ulama’ international. Jika Tun mahu tahu, nama Tun masih disebut-sebut. Ada rakyat Jordan yang menyangka bahawa Tun masih Perdana Menteri kami.
Saya ini, ini sahajalah yang saya mampu beri. Mahu kata pakar, tidak sepakar mana. Saya pun tidak expect Tun akan tanya saya hal sebegini. Sedang ulama’-ulama’ yang lebih pakar, pastinya mungkin ada yang mampu memuaskan hati Tun.
Apa-apa hal pun Tun, inilah jawapan saya. Saya yakin, do’if dan kerdil, ditonton masyarakat Malaysia, kala berhadapan dengan Tun. Nyata, saya hanya cucunda Tun yang berumur 23 tahun, belum lagi menamatkan ijazahnya. Namun saya kekal dengan jawapan saya ini setakat ini. Saya percaya dengan ilmu yang saya perolehi ini, sebagaimana yang saya tulis.
Nota saya yang sebelum ini hanya berniat untuk menyatakan, bagaimana kelirunya masyarakat dengan kata-kata Tun tempoh hari. Saya, berdasarkan ilmu yang sedikit, yang ada pada saya ini, juga penjelasan saya tadi, jelas bahawasanya Hukum Hudud bukan satu ‘rekaan’ ulama’ Fiqah. Ianya memang datang daripada Al-Quran dan As-Sunnah. Bila Tun bicara berkenaan ‘hukum yang keras’ tiada di dalam Al-Quran, saya nyatakan adanya potong tangan di dalam Al-Quran. Berkenaan dengan rejam, wujud di dalam hadith sohih, namun kedudukan rejam ini saya menjumpai pelbagai pandangan. Sebat ada di dalam Al-Quran. Apa-apa hal pun, Tun kemudiannya bicara berkenaan bagaimana ruginya kita jika amal hudud, orang melayu Islam akan tak ada tangan dan sebagainya.
Tun minta tidak dicap sebagai anti-hadith, dan Tun jelas mengakui betapa hadith diperlukan untuk menjelaskan bagaimana untuk bersolat. Maka saya bawakan hadith sohih berkenaan potong tangan, yang jelas tiada diskriminasi. Hatta anak kepada Nabi pun, jika mencuri dan sampai hadnya, maka akan dikenakan hukumannya.
Dari Aisyah r.a., Orang Quraisy merasa tidak senang akan hukuman yang dijatuhkan kepada seorang perempuan suku Makhzum mencuri. Mereka berkata: “Siapakah yang boleh menyampaikan kepada Rasulullah s.a.w. supaya perempuan itu dibebaskan saja?” Kata mereka: “Siapakah yang berani selain Usamah bin Zaid, kesayangan Rasulullah s.a.w.!” Usamah lalu menyampaikannya kepada beliau. Rasulullah s.a.w. bersabda: “Mengapa engkau memberikan pertolongan untuk membebaskan seseorang dari had (hukum) Allah?” Kemudian beliau berdiri lalu berpidato, sebagai berikut: “Orang-orang yang sebelum kamu dibinasakan, kerana kalau orang yang terhormat (mulia) mencuri, mereka biarkan saja. Tetapi kalau yang mencuri itu orang lemah, mereka jatuhi hukuman. Demi Tuhan! Kalau sekiranya Fatimah binti Muhammad mencuri, saya potong juga tangannya!” Hadith Riwayat Bukhari.
Inilah penjelasan kepada ayat berkenaan potong tangan yang wujud di dalam Al-Quran pada ayat 38 Surah Al-Maidah. Saya sudah nyatakan di dalam nota saya, saya ‘tidak arif berkenaan bagaimana hudud itu perlu dilaksanakan.’ Tetapi saya amat pasti bahawa, hudud bukan semata-mata rekaan ulama’ fiqah.
Sekiranya orang menyatakan nota saya adalah satu bentuk salah faham kepada bicara Tun, maka semestinya Tun perlu memberikan penjelasan. Sebab apa yang saya nampak, kenyataan Tun tempoh hari mengundang salah faham yang nyata besar. Kerana nyata, Tun diikuti ramai orang. Suara saya, hanya pasir di tengah suara rakyat yang lain. Dan adalah menjadi kegembiraan saya, apabila Tun memberikan respon. Walaupun saya kira, respon Tun sepatutnya berbentuk umum, kerana ada lagi beberapa orang menulis kritikan yang sama, bahkan ada yang lebih keras, kepada Tun.
Jadi, setakat ini sahajalah daripada saya. Terima kasih kerana sudi menyantuni penulisan saya, membaca nota saya yang terdahulu. Sebarang kesilapan, saya minta maaf. Sebarang kecacatan bahasa dalam penulisan saya, mungkin ada yang dianggap kasar, maka saya minta maaf.
Di kesempatan ini, saya sampaikan salam dua sheikh saya, pakar ilmu hadith daripada Yarmouk, bernama Dr Mehmed Thowalbeh dan Dr Sa’id Bawa’anah. Mereka kata, jika Tun ingin bertanya lebih banyak, mereka sedia membantu. Mereka juga mencadangkan sebuah buku untuk ditelaah Tun, bertajuk: Manahij Al-Muhaddithin karangan Ali Qudhoh.
Jika Tun sudi, sampaikan salam saya kepada ‘nenda’ Tun Dr Siti Hasmah. Dan doakan agar saya selamat melayari bahtera perkahwinan, tarikhnya sekitar sebelum Ramadhan tahun ini.
Sekali lagi, terima kasih, dan minta maaf, daripada saya, Hilal Asyraf, ‘cucunda’ Tun yang masih banyak perlu belajar lagi, semestinya.
Semoga Allah redha, dan membuahkan dari penulisan ini manfaat. Bukan sahaja untuk kita berdua, tetapi juga buat masyarakat.
~ seorang hamba,

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Why it is better to kill Proton!

(This one take from financetwitter)

Abolish Car Excise Taxes – First Step Towards Dismantling Mahathirlogy

Slightly more than three months ago, I wrote an article about the reasons why you shouldn’t buy a car, at least for now. You can read it here. Basically consumers (yes, that’s you, dude) have been taken for a long ride since the introduction of former premier Mahathir’s pet project, Proton, not that it was a complete fault on the part of the dictator but rather on the stupidity of the consumers. Right, it was your parents’ stupidity for voting the monster and his UMNO regime for the last 50-years so you shouldn’t get the blame. But if the same regime is returned to power again in the next general election, then you’re equally idiot, if you choose to cross the “X” next to the “dacing” symbol representing Barisan Nasional.

One of the reasons given in my article for holding on any new car purchases was the political reason. Today, opposition Pakatan Rakyat launches a new initiative in its bid to lure the young voters – abolishing excise duties on cars. It seems they do read blogs for new ideas (*including FinanceTwitter, tongue-in-cheek*) on how to swing fence-sitters. This latest carrot will definitely send Najib administration into defensive mode and you can bet some money that the publicity-crazy prime minister will counter-offer in order to make himself looks good. To those who read our article and halted their intended purchase - congrats. To those who did not, we reserve this for another day -“We Told You Already What !!” (*grin*).

Abolish Duties and Taxes - Malaysia Motor Vehicles

The whole local automotive policy was a genius mechanism to suck people’s hard-earned money. Whether you’re buying a poor man’s Proton or a luxury BMW, you’re contributing to the government’s (read: UMNO) coffer to the tune of an estimated RM6 billion every year, thanks to the generous excise taxes. If there’s one project you should write for your PhD thesis, this is one of it –“Instilling National Pride while Milking Peoples’ Grapes to Dry”. You may not know this but besides the mind-boggling excise taxes, the local automobile industry was also brilliantly designed so that the cronies are laid on top of the pyramid-like supply chain of spare parts. If you’ve been into MLM before, you’ll understand what I mean.

Now, there’re many ways to skin a cat. While Mahathirism has been very successful in skinning ignorant peoples’ wallet through privatization (to the cronies), it seems the grand plan has reaches its tipping point. Don’t make a mistake about it. The present government has not stopped skinning your hard-earned money. On the contrary, the fear of losing the federal government only hastens their greediness. Putting the controversial Selangor water issue aside, the automotive industry saw prices of new model such as Toyota Camry and Honda Civic skyrocket without good justification. Heck, greediness knows no boundary – even an existing model was affected when Volkswagen Malaysia suddenly raised the price of both the 3-door and 5-door Polo GTI 1.4-TSI by a whopping RM34,000 a piece this month.
Volkswagen Polo GTI Price Hike
It was so bad that Volkswagen has to clarify on its Facebook that the price hike (or rather rip-off) was due to “authorities”. If the opposition is smart enough, it should re-strategize and propose more offerings on the table instead of screaming till foam at mouth about corruption. If you were to document every UMNO’s corruption, you can stack the files so high that it can make rounds of trips to the moon and back to planet earth. This latest sexy offering of slashing excise duties may not be as juicy as our proposal of giving away an AP (approved permit) to every citizen but it is good enough to raise millions of young voters eyebrows (and hopefully votes). This is one of the many ways to skin UMNO’s arrogance.

Sure, opposition via PKR strategy director Rafizi Ramli may be testing water and toying with youngsters’ appetite with these latest goodies. They may not be serious after all about slashing the excise taxes in totality but even if they can reduce the present tax bracket of between 85% – 135% by half, that is good enough to cheers. After all, what could you possibly lose with such proposition? This is hilarious but just when PM Najib thought he could buy your votes again with another round of BRIM RM500 cash in the pipeline before the coming general election, the opposition is dishing tens of thousands in saving for an affordable car.

ScientologyMahathirlogy - Proton

If the Church of Scientology makes money primarily by auditing which could run to tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars, the Doctrine of Mahathirlogymakes money by selling (obsolete) national car which run to tens of thousands of ringgit. And this is only Proton pet project, mind you. The former prime minister may think his Mahathirlogy still works with his laughable threats of communists, terrorists, 13-May racial riots, police brutality and whatnot but if the opposition can pull more similar rabbit from its hat to help ease the burden of the people, the old dictator may decide to take the earliest flight out of the country before the next general election results is announced.
Actually there’re many other proposals which are dear to the average-Joes that can be used to send Najib administration to its kennel with tail between his legs but we’ll reserve that for another article. It’s time consumers dictate the prices of the basic necessity – an affordable safe car without costing an arm and a leg. The fact that a Malaysian has to pay 5-year salary compares to their Facebook American friends’ 1-year salary to own the same car is simplyoutrages and insulting. And you can start doing that by not buying any car at all. That’s right, it’s all about basic supply and demand economy. When the cronies can’t make money in the automobile industry, they’ll panic and have no other choice but to lower their prices.

Honda Civic BMW F30 Volkswagen Polo GTI After Excise Tax
If a simple boycott of Mahathir crony’s Gardenia bread could send them screaming in pain, imagine the impact if everyone stop buying new car and make use of whatever left from their existing car. Moving forward, you should know how to vote if you wish to be able to purchase PrevĂ© 1.6 Premium CVT at RM44,000, Honda Civic at RM67,000 or F30 BMW 3-Series 320d at RM149,000. The choice is no brainer.

Monday, July 23, 2012

World's super-rich 'hid $21trn in secret tax havens'

The world's super-rich had at least $21trn hidden in secret tax havens by the end of 2010, according to a new study.

The figure is equivalent to the size of the US and Japanese economies combined, said The Price of Offshore Revisited published on Sunday by the Tax Justice Network.

The report was written by James Henry, a former chief economist at the consultancy McKinsey.

Henry said the $21trn was actually a conservative figure and the true scale could be $32trn.

Henry said he used data from the Bank of International Settlements, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and national governments.

The report said the number of the global super-rich who have amassed a $21trn offshore fortune is fewer than 10 million people.

Of these, less than 100,000 people worldwide own $9.8trn of wealth held offshore, it added.
Henry said: "The lost tax revenues implied by our estimates is huge. It is large enough to make a significant difference to the finances of many countries.

"From another angle, this study is really good news. The world has just located a huge pile of financial wealth that might be called upon to contribute to the solution of our most pressing global problems."

Friday, July 20, 2012

How to fast correctly this Ramadan

In terms of nutrition during the fasting period, hydration is the key

Ramadan is a time of rigorous fast, which is more intense in the region due the severe heat, according to wellbeing and nutrition experts. 

Dr Deepa Dhavjekar, Business Head at Balance Wellness Club, Dubai, said that during the fasting period, it is important to understand how one’s body is likely to respond and why one experiences certain signs and symptoms.

To explain the breakdown of the typical fasting day, she said, “The Suhoor meal [before sunrise] is consumed at a time when physiologically one’s body is still attuned to being asleep. The body and brain are confused about the food intake so food is processed slowly.
“Around 9.00am, when one is usually done with breakfast, the body craves food and starts losing energy. By noon, the first signs of exhaustion start and the body begins to slow down. By 3.30pm, there is more dehydration and the body slows down further. By 5.30pm, there tends to be a fresh bout of energy in anticipation of a meal.”

In terms of nutrition, hydration is key, she added. “It is essential to drink three to four litres of water between Iftar and Suhoor.” Gulf News also spoke to Ghida Arnaout, Clinical Dietician, Live’ly, Dubai, on ways to combat dehydration that can lead to various conditions including back pain, headaches, fatigue, lack of concentration, constipation, bloating and dryness of the skin. 

She said, “At Iftar, start with a glass of fresh juice along with low fat yoghurt. Between Iftar and Suhour, keep sipping water and increase your intake of calorie-free, de-caffeinated beverages like herbal infusions, green teas and sparkling water.”

Monday, July 16, 2012

Top 10 Richest People in Malaysia

Tan Sri Datuk Sir Tiong Hiew King

Asset: Estimated at RM 3.81 Billion
Company: Rimbunan Hijau Group

Tan Sri Datuk Sir Tiong Hiew KingTan Sri Datuk Sir Tiong Hiew King
Tan Sri Datuk Sir Hiew-king Tiong is the Malaysian Chinese founder and chairman of the Rimbunan Hijau Group, a timber company founded in 1975. Its overseas timber operations in Papua New Guinea are the largest in that country. He also has interests in logging operations in Russia.
Tan Sri Datuk Tiong resides in Sibu, a town in Sarawak, of Borneo island that belongs to Malaysia. With a reported net worth of about US$1.2 billion in July 2012.
Tiong’s Rimbunan Hijau Group also controls Sin Chew Jit Poh and Guang Ming Daily, two of the major Chinese national dailies in Malaysia, The National Daily in Papua New Guinea and Ming Pao Holdings Ltd in Hong Kong. He is forging a global Chinese publishing group with his Ming Pao Enterprises; Ming Pao newspaper is also available in San Francisco (no longer in business since Feb. 15, 2009), New York, Vancouver and Toronto.

Tan Sri Dato’ Vincent Tan

Asset: Estimated at RM 3.97 Billion
Company: Berjaya Group

Tan Sri Dato' Vincent TanTan Sri Dato’ Vincent Tan
Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun (born 1952) is the current owner of Cardiff City F.C. and also is the Chairman and Chief Executive of Berjaya Corporation Berhad, which controls a wide array of businesses which includes golfing, property, resorts, and gambling in a group known as the Berjaya Group. He operates the second pay-TV service in Malaysia, MiTV, that was launched in September 2005. In 2010 he entered the Forbes billionaire list with an estimated worth of US$1.3 billion (RM4.2 billion). Tan’s success in the Malaysian business sector has been attributed in part to his close association with prominent Malay political figures.
Tan was born in 1952, in Batu Pahat, Johor. He worked as a clerk and an insurance agent before going into business in the 1980s. In 1982 he purchased Malaysia’s McDonald’s franchise and in 1985 he bought Sports Toto when the lottery agency was privatized by the government.[4] Vincent Tan has had close links with Mahathir Mohamad and his family, the ex-prime minister of Malaysia. Vincent Tan obtained the license of his lottery business from an untendered privatization in 1985 (Studwell, Joe; Asian Godfathers, page 130, Grove Press, 2007)
On 23rd of February 2012, Vincent has decided to retire from an active corporate role in (B-Corp), the flagship of the Berjaya Group of Companies.

Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary

Asset: Estimated at RM 7.91 Billion
Company: Albukhary Foundation

Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Al-BukharyTan Sri Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary
Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Shah bin Syed Nor Al-Bukhary is the richest Bumiputra corporate figure in Malaysia. With involvement in diversified business areas which include transportation and logistics, plantations, property development, defense and armory as well as engineering and power generation, he has a net worth estimated to be US$2.5 billion according to Forbes in July 2012, making him the 8th richest Malaysian.

Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr. Yeoh Tiong Lay

Asset: Estimated at RM 8.57 Billion
Company : YTL Corporation

Tan Sri Dato' Seri Dr. Yeoh Tiong LayTan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr. Yeoh Tiong Lay
Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr. Yeoh Tiong Lay is a Malaysian business tycoon and a prominent philanthropist. He founded YTL Corporation, Malaysia’s biggest and most successful conglomerate with interests in construction, utilities, hotels, property development and technology. YTL is based primarily in Malaysia but has extensive operations in Asia, Australia and the United Kingdom, where it owns the utility Wessex Water. YTL Corp has over $3 billion in cash.

Tan Sri Teh Hong Piow

Asset: Estimated at RM 14.93 Billion
Company: Public Bank

Tan Sri Teh Hong PiowTan Sri Teh Hong Piow
Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr. Teh Hong Piow, the Chairman of Public Bank Berhad in Malaysia, was born in Singapore on 14 March 1930. He attended his formal primary and secondary education at the Anglo-Chinese School in Singapore. He has been married to Puan Sri Tay Sock Noy since 1956 and they have four children – three daughters and a son.
He began his banking career in 1950 as a Bank Clerk in Overseas-Chinese Banking Corporation Ltd. and rose in rank to officer within five years. He joined Malayan Banking Berhad as Manager in 1960. Later in 1964, he was promoted to the position of General Manager at the young age of 34. Teh then left Malayan Banking in 1966 to set up Public Bank.
One of Malaysia’s wealthiest businessmen, Piow obtained three degrees at the unaccredited Pacific Western University and two PhDs at Clayton University (also unaccredited) and University Malaya. His net worth is estimated by Forbes to be US$4.7 billion.

Tan Sri Quek Leng Chan

Asset : Estimated at RM15.24 Billion
Company : Hong Leong Group

Tan Sri Quek Leng ChanTan Sri Quek Leng Chan
YBhg Tan Sri Quek Leng Chan (born 1941, Singapore) is a Malaysian tycoon who co-founded Hong Leong Group Malaysia. He is one of the richest men in Malaysia with an estimated net worth of US$4.8 billion according to Forbes in July 2012.
YBhg Tan Sri Quek Leng Chan studied in Victoria School in Singapore and is qualified as a Barrister-at-Law from Middle Temple, United Kingdom. He has extensive business experience in various sectors, including financial services, manufacturing and real estate. He is the Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Hong Leong Company (Malaysia) Berhad (“HLCM”), Executive Chairman of Hong Leong Industries Berhad (“HLI”), Hume Industries (Malaysia) Berhad (“HIMB”), Hong Leong Financial Group Berhad, GuocoLand (Malaysia) Berhad, Camerlin Group Berhad and Chairman of Hong Leong Bank Berhad, HLG Capital Berhad (“HLG”), Hong Leong Assurance Berhad, Hong Leong Islamic Bank Berhad and Hong Leong Foundation (“HLF”).
Quek oversees the Malaysian operations of the Hong Leong Group while his cousin and fellow billionaire Kwek Leng Beng oversees the Singapore operations.

Tan Sri Lee Shin Cheng

Asset: Estimated at RM15.88 Billion
Company: IOI Group
Tan Sri Lee Shin ChengTan Sri Lee Shin Cheng
Tan Sri Dato’ Lee Shin Cheng is a Malaysian Chinese business magnate who is heavily involved in the plantation industry.
Lee Shin Cheng heads IOI Corporation Berhad (or better known as IOI Group) as its executive chairman. IOI Group was by Forbes in 2012 a palm oil and real estate development giant. It owned refineries in the U.S. and the Netherlands and won a $322 million bid for a 6-acre plot in downtown Singapore for the residential buildings.
IOI, which is listed in Bursa Malaysia, is one of the world’s leading conglomerate managing oil palm plantations, specialty fats, oleo chemicals and property development activities in Malaysia, Indonesia, United States, and Europe. IOI refinery in Rotterdam, the Netherlands is the largest palm oil refinery in Europe. IOI’s oil palm plantations in Malaysia and Indonesia produce palm oil and palm kernel oil. These oils are made into specialty oils, metallic stearates and fats that are used in soaps, detergents, cosmetics and food additives. IOI Group is also a leading real estate developer in Malaysia: projects include townships, shopping malls, condominiums, office towers and resorts.

Puan Sri Lee Kim Hua

Asset: Estimated at RM20.96 Billion
Company: Genting

Puan Sri Lee Kim HuaPuan Sri Lee Kim Hua
Widow of casino magnate Lim Goh Tong. Net worth up $1.4 billion as stocks of family’s Genting and Genting Hong Kong (previously named Star Cruises) both rose nearly 50% in the past year.

Tan Sri T Ananda Krishnan

Asset : Estimated RM30.17 Billion
Company : Usaha Tegas

Tan Sri T Ananda KrishnanTan Sri T Ananda Krishnan
Tatparanandam Ananda Krishnan (born 1938) is a Malaysian businessman and philanthropist of Sri Lankan Tamil origin. Nicknamed A-K, he is currently estimated to have a net worth of US$9.5 billion according to Forbes’ July 2012 list of wealthiest people, making him the second wealthiest in Southeast Asia behind Robert Kuok, and number 89 in the world.
Ananda Krishnan shuns public exposure and is known to maintain a low profile for a person of his stature.
Krishnan’s first entrepreneurial venture was a Malaysian consultancy Usaha Tegas. He set up Exoil Trading, which went on to purchase oil drilling concessions in various countries. Later, he moved into gambling (in Malaysia). In the early part of the 1990s, he started diversifying into the multimedia arena.
Currently, he has business interests in media (Astro), satellite (MEASAT), oil and gas (Bumi Armada, Pexco), telecommunications (Maxis, Aircel). He owns stakes in Tanjong Public Limited Company, an investment holding company with subsidiaries involved in power generation (Powertek), gaming (Pan Malaysian Pools), leisure (Tropical Islands, TGV Cinemas) and property.

Tan Sri Robert Kuok Hock Nien

Asset: Estimated RM61.93 Billion
Company: Kerry Group/ Kuok Group

Tan Sri Robert Kuok Hock NienTan Sri Robert Kuok Hock Nien
Robert Kuok Hock is an influential Malaysian Chinese businessman. According to Forbes his net worth is estimated to be around $12.5 billion on July 2012, making him the richest person in Malaysia and Southeast Asia.
Kuok is media-shy; most of his businesses are privately held by him or his family. Apart from a multitude of businesses in Malaysia, his companies have investments in many countries throughout Asia. His business interests range from sugarcane plantations (Perlis Plantations Bhd), sugar refineries, flour milling, animal feed, oil, mining, finance, hotels, properties, trading, freight and publishing. Biggest source of wealth is stake in Wilmar International, the world’s largest listed palm oil company. He was a student from the school Raffles Institution.