Interpol rejects India's application to blacklist exiled Muslim televangelist Zakir Naik

Interpol rejects India's application to blacklist exiled Muslim televangelist Zakir Naik
India is reportedly undeterred in its pursuit of an Interpol Red Corner Notice (RCN) against Zakir Naik following the international body's recent rejection of a RCN application.
2 min read
01 August, 2019
Zakir Naik is wanted in India on money laundering charges [Getty]
India will continue to pursue the issuance of an Interpol Red Corner Notice (RCN) against controversial Muslim televangelist Zakir Naik, after the international body rejected its application for a second time.

According to sources cited by India Today TV, Indian authorities are currently in negotiations with Interpol to ascertain why the application was unsuccessful.

Indian authorities accuse Naik, a popular TV preacher, of having laundered INR193 crore ($27,761,120) in illicit funds. 

Naik is currently based in Malaysia, where he remains as a permanent resident on a Saudi passport.

A Red Corner Notice would place Naik on a list of wanted persons, however falls short of a full international arrest warrant for the preacher.

Naik - a popular televangelist and Islamic preacher who has tens of thousands of followers on social media - is also wanted by Indian authorities over alleged support for terrorism.

The 53-year-old claims there is a campaign against him, fuelled by the Hindu nationalist agenda of India's Modi government. 

But Muslim-majority Bangladesh also took action against Naik's Dubai-based Peace TV network, following a deadly 2016 attack in Dhaka, saying the perpetrators may have been inspired by his sermons.

He has denied all charges and distanced himself from accusations of supporting terrorism, including by criticising the Islamic State group.

However, his brand of ultra-conservative Wahhabi Islamic views are said to have inspired would-be terrorists such as Najibullah Zazi, the Afghan-American linked to a 2009 New York City Subway plot, who was allegedly an "admirer" of Naik's sermons.

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