Controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik thanked the Malaysian Government for not deporting him from the country despite several efforts made by India in this regard.
Naik in a statement expressed gratitude towards Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Mohamad for “examining his issue from an unbiased perspective”.
He further said that he will abide by the law and support the peace and harmony of the country till the time he stays there.
Naik said that due to lack of evidence against him, “doctored video clips, out-of-context quotations and a host of dishonest schemes” are being used to accuse him of promoting terrorism.
“The simple truth is that any statement ascribed to me that is against humanity is a fabricated statement. Time and time again, I have reiterated that a Muslim cannot be a good Muslim unless he is a good human being,” Naik said.
He claimed that in 25 years of his lecturing on Islam and peace, he never promoted terror.
Last week the Malaysian Prime Minister confirmed that Naik will not be deported to India.
Mahathir’s statement came two days after the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said the extradition request of Naik made by India is under active consideration by the Malaysian government.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA), that is probing the cases against Naik, too, denied having any information about his return to India.
Naik is facing charges of inciting communal disharmony and committing unlawful activities in India.
He is facing probe both in India and Bangladesh after two of the suspects in the terror attack at Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka in July 2016 claimed that they were inspired by Naik’s radical preachings, and were staunch followers of Naik on Facebook and on the Peace Television Channel.
The MEA had cancelled Naik’s passport and asked Malaysia to hand over the Islamic preacher to India.
The 52-year-old currently holds a permanent resident status in Malaysia, which was confirmed by former Malaysian deputy prime minister Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi last year.