PETALING JAYA: Universiti Teknologi Malaysia tonight said that a scheduled talk by renowned classical dancer Ramli Ibrahim was cancelled on the advice of its Islamic centre, as the university did not want to “offend any party”.
UTM said the decision was made based on its guideline which stipulates that any cultural and arts programme must be referred to and approved by its Islamic centre.
The centre had advised against holding the talk, citing its “suitability factor”.
“The decision by UTM’s Islamic centre represents the university’s stance, which places great importance on programmes that do not offend any party and balances several aspects including harmony and spirituality,” it said in a statement tonight.
UTM also said that the talk was among the programmes that were lined up for the inaugural “Minggu Seni Tun Razak” arts week.
They went on to apologise to Ramli if the decision to cancel the talk had inconvenienced him.
Earlier today, FMT reported that the virtual talk on how dance transcended race, scheduled to be held today, was cancelled.
According to an announcement by the organiser, they were told by the Islamic centre to cancel the event for “certain reasons”.
Ramli said his office, which had been negotiating with the student body of the said university, had informed him of the cancellation yesterday evening.
He however said he wasn’t surprised by the move, adding the “controversy” of a Malay man performing a Hindu dance had always plagued his career.