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India seeks to secure arrest warrant for Zakir Naik

June 11, 2019

* India authorities to pursue Zakir Naik extradition 

Controversial preacher Zakir Naik may face possible extradition to India, The Hindu reported today.

India’s Enforcement Directorate (ED), according to the daily, is set to secure an arrest warrant against the preacher and others in an ongoing trial heard by a special court in Mumbai under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act 2002.

The Mumbai court will decide whether a non-bailable warrant of arrest should be issued against Zakir, with the next hearing scheduled for June 19.

The ED will then request for an Interpol red notice against the preacher, as well as extradition from Malaysia after obtaining a non-bailable warrant from the court.

Malaysia is an Interpol member country and has an extradition treaty with India.

The ED, which works to curb money laundering, is expected to open more proceedings against Zakir under India’s Fugitive Economic Offenders Act 2018.

The charges are related to more than 1.93 billion rupees (RM115.66 million) from proceeds of crime in India and overseas identified by the enforcement agency.

Zakir is alleged to have invested in Dubai by developing high-end bungalows, while his organisation, Islamic Research Foundation, is said to have received huge sums of money from “dubious, suspicious or unknown sources.”

The preacher is also accused by authorities in his home country of hate speech and inciting terrorism via his TV channel Peace TV.

Peace TV is banned in India, but has an estimated 200 million viewers worldwide.

Despite Delhi having made an official request to have Zakir extradited, the Pakatan Harapan government said it would not comply unless he breaks local laws.

One of Zakir’s disciples, Muhammad Zamri Vinoth Kalimuthu, was recently investigated for allegedly insulting Hinduism in a speech.

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