The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has found merit in complaints that the Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), run by Salafi ideologue Zakir Naik, is a subversive body and has been radicalising Muslim youth.
A Times Now report says that the MHA has prepared a two-page report on the IRF and Naik, recommending that the IRF be declared an “unlawful association” under sub-section 1 of Section 3 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967. The report discloses that the IRF has been carrying out several “unlawful activities”.
Naik’s speeches, says the MHA note, “are objectionable and subversive in nature” and that he had been “extolling known terrorists like Osama bin Laden”.
Zakir Naik has been promoting enmity & hatred between different religious groups and inspiring Muslim youth & terrorists to commit terrorist acts.
The MHA note warns: “If urgent steps are not taken there is a possibility of more youth being motivated and radicalized to commit terrorist activities.”
The note cites some speeches of Naik (like one where he says, “Had Islam wanted, 80% of India's population would not have remained Hindus.”) to contend that Naik's “divisive ideology is against India's pluralistic and secular social fabric and it may be viewed as causing disaffection against India, thereby making it an unlawful activity”.
Once the IRF is declared “unlawful” through a gazette notification, a special tribunal set up by the Union government and headed by a High Court judge will examine the notification and will hear all parties, including the IRF, before upholding the notification or cancelling it within six months.
If the tribunal upholds the notification, all funds and bank accounts of the IRF will be frozen and seized, and any person associated with the foundation could be arrested and jailed.
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