Social media platforms also off limits to Zakir Naik – IGP

(Bernama) – Controversial preacher Dr Zakir Naik is not allowed to give talks on all mediums including social media, said Inspector-General of Police Abdul Hamid Bador.

He said the ban is applicable throughout the country until investigations involving him are settled.

“A directive has been issued by police whereby Zakir is prohibited from making any further speeches after the episode in Kelantan recently, which is aimed at giving us time to complete investigations relating to reports lodged on that episode.

“With this directive, all state police chiefs are responsible to advise any parties having plans to invite Zakir to give public lectures not to do so,” he told Bernama.

Abdul Hamid said Zakir’s lecture in Kelantan had caused uneasiness and confusion among many quarters and police were asking to be given time to investigate the matter.

“We will get the facts on what actually transpired,” he said.

Temporary measure

According to him, the instructions issued were intended to calm the situation and was temporary.

“That seems fair, it is only temporary and if the situation doesn’t change, the instructions will remain.

“It is clear that we do not want these religious talk forums to be linked to political issues. It is not appropriate for religious talks to include political issues both at home and abroad, ”he said.

Abdul Hamid said with the order issued, police hoped that there would be no objections until a final decision was reached.

“With regard to this case, I do not want to point fingers because actions were taken by both sides… by Zakir and also by those dissatisfied with the content of his discourse,” he said.

Zakir is facing a police investigation under Section 504 of the Penal Code for intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace, after 115 reports were received against him.

No extradition requests yet

He has been called up twice to Bukit Aman to have his statement recorded, the first time for five hours last Friday and the second time for 10 hours from Monday afternoon up to early Tuesday.

The preacher from India, who is a permanent resident in Malaysia, is alleged to have made controversial remarks against Hindu Malaysians and Chinese Malaysians during a talk in Kota Bharu on Aug 3, prompting calls for him to be deported to India.

Zakir has been wanted by Indian authorities since 2016 for alleged money laundering and inciting extremism through hate speeches.

Asked if the Indian authorities had sought Zakir’s extradition, Abdul Hamid said there has been no such application and that Malaysian police had yet to know the facts about the offences the preacher had allegedly committed.