“Every Muslim should be a terrorist,” said Zakir Naik, an Indian Islamic televangelist. No, it is not the only outrageous statement coming from the founder of Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) Zakir Naik, he had surprised the world when he supported the terrorist Osama Bin Laden. He had said, “If bin Laden is fighting enemies of Islam, I am for him…if he is terrorizing America – the terrorist, biggest terrorist – I am with him.”
A doctor turned Islamic preacher Naik is believed to have radicalised many young Muslims. His recorded TV shows were used by terrorist organisations like Lashkar-e-Taiba to peddle their agenda and brainwash the young boys.
Before getting into how Indian governments both UPA and NDA have treated Zakir Naik, let’s first take a look at what are some of his views on various things.
Zakir Naik’s Views
Beating of wife ‘symbolically’ is okay
On sex slaves
Death penalty for apostasy
Listening to music is haram
Racist comments on Malaysian Indians and Chinese
It is after his recent remark questioning the loyalty of Malaysian Indians and Chinese living in Malaysia, a controversy has sparked off. The Malaysian government has decided to ban Zakir Naik from giving public speeches in the country.
And, this is not the first time that he has been banned in a country. In 2010, he was banned by the United Kingdom and Canada for his radical messaging. In 2016, his NGO Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) has been banned by the Modi government terming it unlawful. And, after the terror attack in Dhaka, Bangladesh government had banned Zakir Naik’s Peace TV. Even Sri Lanka after a terror attack in the country has reportedly banned the airing of Peace TV in the country.
In 2016, after the Dhaka attack and the crackdown by Modi government, Zakir Naik found himself in the middle of a storm. He ran away from India to Malaysia. The Indian government has asked the Malaysian government for Zakir Naik’s extradition.
But before the Modi government’s action against the radical preacher, he had a free run in the country enjoying political patronage getting access to significant platforms.
Free Pass to Zakir Naik under UPA
Congress’s veteran all praise for Zakir Naik
Zakir Naik donated Rs 50 lakh to Sonia Gandhi led Rajiv Gandhi Trust in 2011
Even after a ban by UK and Canada in 2010 on Zakir Naik, the Sonia Gandhi led Rajiv Gandhi Trust in 2011 received a donation of Rs 50 lakh from Zakir Naik’s NGO IRF. After he came under the Modi government’s scanner, the donation was reported to have been returned in July 2016.
Lecturing the IPS officers at National Police Academy, Hyderabad
What can be more ironical than a person advocating every Muslim to be a terrorist is addressing police officers on counter-terrorism? But this has happened under the watch of the UPA government. Zakir Naik, in an interview, has claimed that he has been invited twice to National Police Academy between 2009 and 2013.
UPA Govt Minister seeking protection for Zakir Naik
Action under Modi led NDA Government
As explained above, feeling the heat of the crackdown by the Indian government, Zakir Naik flew away to Malaysia. The government banned his NGO. India is now demanding his extradition from Malaysia. The fear of scrutiny is so much that in one of his recent interviews, Naik has even said, “He will not come back to India if BJP is in power.”
In the same interview, Zakir Naik has also said that “I agree that more than half of the countries in the world won’t give me visa thanks to Modi.”