Controversial preacher Dr Zakir Naik issued a written statement from Saudi Arabia stating that he does not support terrorism or violence “in any form whatsoever”.
He was to travel to Mumbai but later cancelled it and called for a press conference via Skype, which, too, was later cancelled.
He also said that despite the reports in the media, no Indian government agency has contacted him. “So far not a single official Indian government agency has contacted me for any clarification,” the preacher’s statement declared, adding that “it would be my pleasure to cooperate with any official Indian government investigation agency for any information they might require from me.”
Bangladesh has banned his channel Peace TV. Dhaka had said that two of the five terrorists killed in the Holey Artisan restaurant attack which left 22 dead, including two cops, were inspired by him.
Following Bangladesh’s request, India said it will probe Naik to see if his preaching inspires jihadi activities.
The controversial preacher’s sermons, writings and funds are being examined by both the Centre and the Maharashtra government. Naik’s Islamic Research Foundation or IRF has its office in Mumbai. Reports have now emerged that he will travel to Africa from Saudi Arabia.
He is banned from entering UK and Canada following accusations that his speeches justify acts of terror. Naik claims that his speeches have been taken out of context