Zakir Naik, the firebrand Indian Islamic preacher, who is banned in the United Kingdom, Canada and Malaysia for his hate speeches against other religions, is the latest headache for Indian security agencies.
Naik has been in the news recently since his sermons are believed to have inspired two of the five terrorists, who hacked 20 people to death at a cafe in Dhaka, last week.
On Wednesday, Minister for State, Home Affairs, Kiren Rijiju said that Naik’s speech was a “matter of concern” and that “agencies were working on it”.
Rijiju also told reporters that India has good relations with Bangladesh, especially with regard to fighting terrorism, and said, “Terror can be defeated only through close coordination and by fighting together (against it).”
The 51-year-old leader has long been a polarising figure in Mumbai.
However, Naik can no more hold his public sermons in Mumbai that used to draw large crowds. The Mumbai cops have denied him permission since 2012, unnerved by what used to be said at these functions.
Naik, a suave doctor who speaks fluent English, interspersed with Bambaiya Hindi, calls himself an Islamic preacher.
However, he has never been popular with the Sunni and Shia clergy in Mumbai. In fact, he has more detractors within the Muslim community that outside it.
Though the Mumbai resident runs Islamic Research Foundation and Peace TV, a channel, according to its website, dedicated to promotion of “Truth, Justice, Morality, Harmony and Wisdom for the whole of humankind,” his speeches don't really reflect any peace.
Take a look at his speeches:
1. On why Muslims should become terrorists:
“If bin Laden is fighting enemies of Islam, I am for him. If he is terrorizing America—the terrorist, biggest terrorist—I am with him. Every Muslim should be a terrorist. The thing is that if he is terrorizing the terrorist, he is following Islam. Whether he is or not, I don’t know, but you as Muslims know that, without checking up, laying allegations is also wrong,” Naik said in this speech.
Naik has repeatedly denied these statements, claiming that the said video was doctored.
2. On sex slaves:
"If you do not have the means to marry, marry a slave woman and give her freedom.." He said this is what the Quran encourages. However, he said it can't work vice-versa. According to Naik, it can't work if a woman wants to do the same. Only a man has such rights.
3. Where, Naik spoke about how to beat one's wife 'gently':
"If you have a son, and he wants to jump from the roof, you will admonish him." According to Naik, Allah has given permission to men to beat women. But, he says, men should beat their wives 'lightly'. "As far as the family is concerned, a man is the leader. So, he has the right," he says.
4. On why Islamic countries should not allow people of other faiths:
"Propagation of other religions is prohibited. Even construction of any place of worship is prohibited," he said.
Explaining why Islamic countries shouldn't allow people of other faiths to build their places of worship, Naik gives an example. He says he asks Non-muslims who they will pick as a teacher for their school, if there are three teachers-- The candidate who says 2+2=3, the one who says 2+2=6 or the one who says 2+2=4.
"As far as religions are concerned, we (Muslims) know that only Islam is the true religion in the eyes of God.
5. Death penalty for people who leave Islam:
According to Naik, in case, somebody wanted to convert to another faith, and leave Islam, then capital punishment was the most 'humane punishment' for him.
6. On why homosexuality is wrong and prohibited:
"LGBT Community are patients suffering from a sinful mental problem," he said in this video. "It's because they watch pornographic movies. The TV channels are to be blamed," he said.
7. On how to defend Talibans:
"If Osama Bin Laden is for truth, if he is fighting the enemies of Islam, I am for him. Every Muslim should be a terrorist," he said.
8. On how chopping of hands for stealing is not that bad a thing:
Naik said that whoever does a wrong will be punished for it, so chopping somebody's hand for stealing is not a bad idea. According to the 'Islamic preacher', America should implement this as a law to reduce crimes in the country.
9. On how playing music is a sin:
The 'Islamic preacher' says that music intoxicates a person and that it is like alcohol. He also says that other Muslim scholars who did not call it a sin were misguiding fellow Muslims.
10. On how the theory of evolution is just a 'theory'.
According to him, Darwin's evolution theory is completely baseless.
"What Darwin said was only a theory. There is no book saying ‘the Fact of Evolution’ – All the books say ‘Theory of Evolution’," he said.
"There is not a single statement in the Holy Qur’an, which Science has proved wrong yet. Hypothesis go against the Qur’an – theories go against the Qur’an. There is not a single scientific fact, which is mentioned in the Holy Qur’an which goes against established science – It may go against theory," Naik said.