Police launch probe on Zakir Naik

15 Aug 2019 / 20:59 H.

SHAH ALAM: The controversy stirred up by Islamic preacher Dr Zakir Naik has now landed him in the cross hairs of the police.

Investigations were initiated against him today over remarks he made that have riled up Hindus in Malaysia.

In a speech at a rally in Kelantan last week, Zakir also allegedly questioned the loyalty of the Indian and Chinese communities.

Federal police CID director Comm Datuk Huzir Mohamed said Zakir was being investigated for intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace under Section 504 of the Penal Code.

As of today, 115 reports had been lodged against Zakir and a special team has been set up by Bukit Aman to conduct the investigations.

Meanwhile, the situation has degenerated further with the first death threat received by civil liberties lawyer Syahredzan Johan on Wednesday night.

Syahredzan, who is political secretary to Iskandar Putri MP Lim Kit Siang, lodged a police report today over the threat that he received via Facebook.

Part of the message, written in Malay, read “Anak haram kau ni, kau usir Dr Zakir Naik, aku akan cari kau sampai dapat dan aku akan pisahkan kepala babi kau tu dari badan kau, ini sumpah aku demi agama Islam dan bangsa Melayu. Kalau berani cubalah” (You bastard, if you chase away Dr Zakir Naik, I will find you and separate your pig head from your body. This is my pledge for my religion and race. Do it if you dare).

Syahredzan said the threat could have been triggered by his suggestion that Zakir’s permanent residence status be revoked.

“I hope this supporter of Zakir Naik only remains emotional and does not act on his words violently. I leave it to the authorities to handle this,“ he said.

An online campaign to expel Zakir from Malaysia has also gained wide public support. A “Deport Zakir Naik” petition launched early this week has garnered more than 83,000 signatures as of 7pm today.

In another development, Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri James Masing confirmed that an entry ban imposed on Zakir in 2017 would stay.

In a Whatsapp response to questions from theSun, he said “Yes, Sarawak barred Zakir Naik from entering Sarawak since the time of the late Tok Nan (former Sarawak chief minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem). We don’t want religious bigots the likes of Zakir Naik coming to Sarawak to disturb our social and religious harmony.”

Meanwhile, former minister Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz has chided Malaysians for their rhetoric over the Zakir issue.

“I am disappointed that Malaysians are at loggerheads over a foreigner,“ she said.

She said the people should instead focus on the many challenges, including a possible economic downturn, on the horizon.

Even as the anger swells against him, Zakir seems to want to remain in the public eye. He is slated to feature in a three-day event beginning Saturday in Perlis.

The event, organised by the Perlis-based Islamic group One Centre Malaysia and Perlis Malay Customs and Islamic Religious Council and titled “Malaysia Reverts Camp”, will feature his wife Farhat and their children Fariq, Rushda and Zikra.

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