NEW DELHI: Solicitor -General Ranjit Kumar has advised the Centre to ban controversial Muslim preacher Zakir Naik and book his Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) under anti-terrorism acts.
In his opinion submitted to the Ministry of Home Affairs, Kumar termed Naik’s ideology divisive, and against India’s pluralistic, secular and social fabric, adding that Islamic Research Foundation should be declared an unlawful organisation.
The Centre had sought the opinion of the Solicitor-General following Naik’s speeches across the country. According to sources, the ministry is studying the Solicitor-General ’s opinion. The Solicitor-General has told the Centre that Naik’s statements constitute incitement and his speeches promote enmity and hatred between religious groups, with a conscious intention on his part. The Solicitor-General also stated that Naik’s speeches inspired and incited terrorists and could radicalise young minds, and a case of hate speech should be made out against him. Naik, a Mumbai-based televangelist, who also runs Peace TV, has been under the scanner of various agencies.
Naik, in a media interaction via Skype from Saudi Arabia in July, had rubbished allegations against him while terming himself as a ‘messenger of peace’. He had also said he would not return to India this year. Earlier in August, police had said the Islamic preacher had received foreign funding of `60 crore which was subsequently transferred to the bank accounts of his family members. They had also said the tele-evangelist had floated four shell companies in which his kin were directors.