Islamic preacher Zakir Naik issued an open letter addressed to “Indians” on Saturday claiming that his non-profit organisation, Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) and himself have been set up for a ban by the government.
He said that if at all he was driven out of India it might be for the better and many countries would give him a “red carpet treatment.”
In the letter titled ‘Five Questions and an Appeal’, Dr. Naik wrote that he was being targeted by the “system, media, and the agencies” which were being used by the government to arrive at “a premeditated end result.” He said he had spent the last 25 years promoting peace, and was not guilty of any wrongdoing or offence. The media stories surrounding him were “planted” and legal agencies had not found any evidence to incriminate him in the alleged offences.
“Let’s not be gullible enough to assume that there isn’t a deeper agenda behind this vicious campaign. This is not just an attack on me; it’s an attack against Indian Muslims. And it’s an attack against peace, democracy and justice,” he wrote. He said the motive was to target his community by “demonising” him.
Dr. Naik also wrote about the licence renewal for his Islamic Research Foundation which resulted in the suspension of four officers from the Home Ministry, including the Joint Secretary.
“Why would the government renew IRF’s FCRA registration and then cancel it? It seems illogical. Is it because the renewal was against the laid down agenda of the government? Why would you suspend FCRA officials? Is it because they did things by the book and acted honestly without any bias or prejudice when they renewed IRF’s registration? Is it because they were not influenced by the political agenda of the MHA?”