SINGAPORE--The Malaysian government has banned a Malay-language edition of a popular “Ultraman” comic book on grounds its references to Allah subverted public order and morals.
“Ultraman is idolized by many children. Equating the character with Allah (God) could bewilder young Muslims and damage their faith,” the country’s Ministry of Home Affairs said in a statement issued March 7.
According to local media, the offending line on the front cover of “Ultraman The Ultra Power” said Ultraman is “regarded and respected like Allah.”
The government body issued an original notification Feb. 18 stipulating the publication ban in line with the Printing Presses and Publications Act, which it uses to regulate the media.
The Malaysian title of the “Ultraman The Ultra Power” comic was produced and published by a local publishing company based on the original “Ultraman” series.
Tokyo-based Tsuburaya Productions Co., creator of the “Ultraman” series, released a statement March 7 over the controversy in which it said, “We never officially approved the publication or its content.”
About 60 percent of Malaysia’s population is Muslim.
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