Zakir Naik declared proclaimed offender, NIA to attach his assets to case
The televangelist and founder of the banned Islamic Research Foundation fled from the country a year ago after terrorists in Bangladesh claimed they were inspired by his sermons.india Updated: Jul 29, 2017 08:49 IST
Controversial televangelist Zakir Naik has been declared a proclaimed offender and the process to attach his assets has been initiated, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) said on Friday. Two central agencies – the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and NIA – are exploring all legal options against Naik, who has left the country.
Earlier this week, the NIA had obtained an order from the special court in Mumbai to declare Naik a proclaimed offender, and on Friday, the agency moved an application seeking attachment of five of his properties, including his home. However, as the court was on leave, the plea will be heard on Monday.
The agency had on April 20 obtained a non-bailable warrant against Naik in connection with the case registered for allegedly inciting youth to take up terror activities.
The NIA had alleged in its application that “Naik has been promoting enmity between different religious groups in India through his public speeches and lectures on various platforms, and inciting Muslim youth and terrorist in India and abroad to commit unlawful activities and terrorist act. These activities of Dr Naik and his associates are causing disaffection against government of India and are prejudicial to the maintenance of harmony among various communities and likely to disturb the public tranquility”.
On November 18, 2016, the agency had registered a criminal case against the controversial preacher under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. His organisation, the Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), was declared an “unlawful association” by the government a day before the NIA registered the case.