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NIA searches 12 Islamic Research Foundation premises, registers case against Zakir Naik

A case has been registered against Zakir Naik at our Mumbai branch and we had served notices last evening (Friday) itself, says an NIA official on condition of anonymity. Photo: PTIPremium
A case has been registered against Zakir Naik at our Mumbai branch and we had served notices last evening (Friday) itself, says an NIA official on condition of anonymity. Photo: PTI

The action by the NIA came barely a few days after the Union cabinet declared Zakir Naik's IRF as a banned organisation under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act

New Delhi: The National Investigation Agency, or NIA, conducted search operations at 12 premises connected to controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik’s Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) in Mumbai and seized incriminating documents, files, electronic storage devices and about Rs12 lakh in cash.

“The recovered documents relate to various activities, including financial transactions and property details, of Zakir Naik and IRF. To assist the search teams, a team of income tax experts has been flown into Mumbai from the NIA headquarters in Delhi," said an NIA official on condition of anonymity.

“A case has been registered against Zakir Naik at our Mumbai branch and we had served notices last evening (Friday) itself. The search in those premises has been on since then," the NIA official said.

This step has followed quickly on the heels of the ban imposed by the home ministry, in a gazette notification against the IRF.

The case against Naik has been registered under 10, 13 ad 18 of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and section 153A of the IPC (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion...and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony).

Also Read: Zakir Naik extolling virtues of terrorists like Osama bin Laden, says home ministry

The home ministry said that through his speeches and statements, Naik had been promoting enmity and hatred between different religious groups and inspiring Muslim youths and terrorists in India and abroad to commit terrorist acts.

Sudhir Kumar Saxena, joint secretary of the MHA had stated, “we have learnt that Naik has been extolling virtues of known terrorists such as Osama bin Laden."

While the NIA had begun raiding premises of the IRF, in Mumbai, on Friday evening itself, Naik continues to remain absent from the scene — a factor, which the NIA stated was too early to act upon.

Also Read: Zakir Naik’s NGO IRF banned for 5 years

“As of now it is too early to tell if Naik or the IRF will cooperate with the ongoing investigation or not. At the moment Naik is not in India and we can only say something conclusive once he is back in the country. The case of issuing notices to Naik and the IRF will only be taken at a much later stage," the official added.

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