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MB: Kedah govt to go ahead with mall project

ALOR SETAR (Jan 19): The Kedah government is to go ahead with the RM500 million Aman Central mall project regardless of a court decision pertaining to an adjacent madrasah, the proposed demolition of which to make way for the complex has elicited opposition.

Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Azizan Abdul Razak said that if the Alor Setar High Court decides in favour of the Madrasah Salihiah committee, which filed a writ of summons on Jan 9 to stop the demolition of the house of worship, the state government would leave the madrasah untouched but still go ahead with the mall project.

The court is scheduled to hear the case on Feb 6.

"I believe the problem will be solved. The mall, which will become a new landmark in Alor Setar, will be built.

"If the court decides against the demolition of the madrasah, let it remain there. We will abide by the decision of the court," he told reporters after a reception and the distribution of oranges to members of the Chinese community who celebrate Chinese New Year on Monday.

Azizan said the Aman Central mall will augment the development of Alor Setar and provide jobs for about 2,000 people.

The mall will replace the Tunku Yaacob shopping complex which has remained abandoned for more than 30 years despite changing hands from developer to developer.

Azizan said a 4,800 sq ft surau will be built in the mall, adding that it will be on the ground floor to facilitate the entry and exit of worshippers.

He said the madrasah could be relocated to any of six possible sites nearby which the Kedah Islamic Affairs Council (MAIK) has identified.

The menteri besar also said that a five-star hotel will be built on a site opposite the mall to boost the area's growth. — Bernama

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