NIA files FIR against controversial preacher Zakir Naik, raids 10 centres of IRF

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Mumbai: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday carried out searches at 10 places in a case registered against controversial preacher Zakir Naik's Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) in Mumbai.

A case was registered against Zakir Naik and others under Section 10, 13, 18 of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act and Section 153A of IPC for allegedly 'spreading enmity' between religions on Friday, says media.

On Friday, a notice was issued by the Mumbai Police to the IRF which stated that it had been banned under provisions of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA). The IRF was quoted as saying that they were looking at taking legal steps to challenge the ban.

According to the notification, Zakir Naik had 'justified suicide bombers, made subversive and derogatory speeches that promoted enmity in society and gave birth to divisive ideologies against India'. Some of arrested terrorists who quoted Naik as an inspiration have also been named in the notification.

Naik has been on the crosshairs of several probe and anti-terror agencies ever since it emerged that he had inspired the five terrorists who had attacked a posh eatery in Dhaka and killed 22 civilians and five policemen in July this year. They had been especially criticised because the attack had taken place during the holy Islamic month of Ramadan.

Naik had earlier — in 2010 — to be precise, banned from entering Britain for saying things like: "I tell Muslims that every Muslim should be a terrorist. Terrorist means a person who terrorises. When a robber sees a policeman, he is terrified. So for a robber, a policeman is a terrorist. So in this context every Muslim should be a terrorist to the robber."

In the aftermath of the Dhaka terror attack and the coming-to-light of the role Naik may have played in it, the Maharashtra government had ordered a probe by the Mumbai Police into Naik's activities and speeches.

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