KUALA LUMPUR, April 17 — At a forum tonight, 40 Indian groups signed a resolution urging Putrajaya to ban Dr Zakir Naik from entering Malaysia again, claiming the Mumbai-based televangelist posed a threat to national security.
To back their argument, Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) national chairman P. Waytha Moorthy accused Dr Zakir of encouraging discord by allegedly promoting terrorism and criticising the various faiths practiced in Malaysia.
“Because he’s a threat to national security, harmony and peaceful co-existence of Malaysians in this country.
“He’s openly promoted terrorism and openly denigrated and ridiculed members of other faiths, that itself is a threat to national security and also to the harmony and peaceful coexistence to the people,” he said during a forum at the Kuala Lumpur Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall today.
He added that Dr Zakir should also be “treated like a terrorist” by the international community, but did not give the reason behind his call.
The resolution signed by the 40 NGOs also urged Putrajaya to implement the teaching of world religions in the education system to promote tolerance and understanding.
Dr Zakir’s one-week tour here organised by the Terengganu state government has received opposition from several Hindu and Indian groups, who claimed that the preacher regularly insults Hinduism in his lectures.
MIC Youth and Malaysian Indian Progressive Association have both lodged police reports against Dr Zakir, while Malaysian Hindu Sangam has urged authorities to deport the Muslim evangelist.
MIC Youth leader C Sivarraajh also said last week that its legal bureau was considering a court injunction against Dr Zakir’s appearance in the country.
Dr Zakir has also led five individuals to renounce their faiths and embrace Islam, four in Kuala Lumpur last night and one in Terengganu on Thursday.
Hindraf had protested Dr Zakir’s last visit in 2012, and last week urged against his visit this year, calling him a hate-monger who endangers pluralistic Malaysia.
In 2008, Dr Zakir was banned from United and Kingdom and Canada after reportedly expressing his support for jihadist group Al-Qaeda and its leader Osama bin Laden, and urging Muslims worldwide to become terrorists.