Government examining Zakir Naik’s speeches: Rajnath Singh

Rajnath-Singh(IANS)Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday said speeches of controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik were being examined by the government and appropriate action will be taken.

Meanwhile, in a bid to defend himself for having share the stage with Naik in a 2012 event, senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh on Friday slammed the Home Minister for meeting Malegaon blast accused Sadhvi Pragya Thakur.

Naik is under the scanner following revelations that two of the five young militants who massacred 20 hostages, including an Indian, at a popular cafe in Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka on July 1, drew their inspiration from his speeches.

“We have taken cognisance of Zakir Naik’s speeches and necessary instructions have been issued in this regard. His speeches/CDs are being examined and whatever is justified will be done,” Rajnath Singh told the media here.

“As far as the government of India is concerned, we will not compromise on terrorism at any cost,” he added.

Naik, founder of Mumbai-based Islamic Research Foundation, is banned in Britain and Canada for his hate speeches aimed against other religions.

Digvijaya Singh came under attack on Thursday for having dubbed the preacher a “messenger of peace” in 2012 and also sharing the stage with him.

“I am being criticised for sharing stage with Zakir Naik, but what about Rajnath Singh ji meeting bomb blast accused Pragya Thakur,” the Congress leader tweeted.

“Pragya is an accused in bomb blast, is there a case against Zakir Naik as yet? What about Sri Sri Ravi Shankar ji sharing stage with Zakir,” he further tweeted.

“If Rajnath Singh visits Malegaon bomb blast accused Pragya Thakur, is that nationalism,” Digvijay Singh told the media.

“Sri Sri Ravishankar ji shares the stage with Zakir Naik, that’s nationalism, but if I share the stage with him, I become anti-national? What kind of double standards are these?”

“What is the allegation against Zakir Naik? Is he a terrorist, is there a case against him? Is he a criminal,” he further said.

Meanwhile, supporters of controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik took out a solidarity march in Srinagar on Friday to condemn any action that might be taken against the scholar.

Over a dozen supporters gathered peaceful in the Residency Road area and shouted slogans in favour of Zakir Naik.

Speaking to the media on the sidelines of their march, Muhammad Aamir, 35, a supporter said in Srinagar: “He is a renowned Islamic scholar who has always condemned terrorism.”

“Any action to ban his preaching or his television channel will have serious repercussions,” Aamir added.

Medaram Jathara

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