Indian religious preacher Zakir Naik has termed the five-year ban on his NGO Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) as communal and an attack on Muslims, peace, democracy and justice.
In a three-page open letter, the televangelist alleged that Narendra Modi-led Indian government timed the ban on IRF to coincide with its recent demonetisation “fiasco” to prevent resistance and divert media attention.
The 51-year-old religious preacher, who is currently residing at an undisclosed location outside India, has issued the statement in response to the government’s ban on IRF for five years, declaring it as a terror outfit under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
India's National Investigation Agency raids Zakir Naik's NGO offices
“It is now proven that the decision to ban IRF was taken months ago and it was a communal decision. Before investigations were done, even before reports submitted, the ban was already decided. IRF was to be banned. Whether it was owing to my religion or some other reason, does not matter," Naik said. He lamented that his completely lawful work of 25 years was banned, terming it most unfortunate for India.
India’s National Investigation Agency has been scrutinising Naik’s activities for the past few days and complaints have also been lodged against him under sections of the Indian Penal Code and UAPA for various charges.
This article originally appeared on The Economic Times
Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
For more information, please see our Comments FAQ