Govt puts Zakir Naik’s NGO under prior permission list
Controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik’s IRF Educational Trust has been put under prior permission category, thus preventing it from receiving foreign funds without the permission of the central government.
In a gazette notification, the Home Ministry said that on the basis of records available and reports received from intelligence agencies, it found that the IRF Education Trust has violated various provisions of the Foreign Contribution Regulations Act (FCRA) 2010.
“Now, therefore, the central government in exercise of powers conferred by sub-section (3) of section 11 of the FCRA 2010, hereby specifies that the IRF Education Trust shall obtain prior permission of the central government on each occasion before accepting any foreign contribution in accordance with the provisions of section 12 of the Act and rules made thereunder,” the notification said.
The move came after different investigations found Naik to be “involved” in utilising funds meant for his NGOs for alleged radicalisation of youths and “inspiring” them into terror activities, official sources said.
Government is also in the process of cancellation of the FCRA registration of Islamic Research Foundation, another NGO promoted Zakir Naik, and a final show cause notice to the organisation has already been issued.
Interestingly, the IRF’s registration under the FCRA was renewed in September inadvertently despite multiple probes against Naik, leading to suspension of a Joint Secretary and four other officials in the Home Ministry.
Government is also planning to declare IRF as an unlawful association under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act and a nod from the Union Cabinet is awaited for it.
Naik came under the scanner of the security agencies after Bangladeshi newspaper ‘Daily Star’ reported that one of the perpetrators of the July 1 terror attack in Dhaka, Rohan Imtiaz, ran propaganda on Facebook last year quoting Naik.
The Islamic orator is banned in the UK and Canada for his hate speech aimed against other religions. He is among 16 banned Islamic scholars in Malaysia.