BUDGET hotels that rent out rooms by the hour have contributed to the high number of khalwat (close proximity) cases in Selangor, Sinar Harian reported.

Selangor Islamic Affairs Department (Jais) investigation and enforcement assistant director Sharom Maarof said arrests pertaining to khalwat topped the cases recorded by Jais last year.

Most of the cases involved people aged between 20 and 30 years, he said.

He added that although there were fewer cases than in 2010, the number was still high.

Last year, the department recorded 1,734 cases of khalwat compared with 1,783 in 2010.

Regarding arrests for gambling, Sharom said such cases had reduced dramatically, from 331 in 2010 to 75 last year.

Cases involving alcohol consumption had also gone down, with 18 arrests last year against 96 in the previous year.

Meanwhile, Prof Turiman Suandi from Universiti Putra Malaysia’s education faculty said social problems occurred mostly among Malay youths.

He said religious guidance must start from the home, with the father as head of the family showing the way by leading the family in prayers together.

Prof Turiman said this could go a long way towards preventing incidents of children running away from home, drug abuse and divorce.