PETALING JAYA: India is in the final stages of its legal process for the extradition of fugitive preacher Zakir Naik, and will soon submit an official request to the Malaysian government.
The Hindustan Times quoted a spokesperson from the external affairs ministry who said the internal process for Naik’s extradition was also underway.
“The formal request for assistance of a foreign government in such cases requires a legal process. We are nearing the completion of this exercise.
“Soon an official request will be made to the Malaysian government,” Raveesh Kumar was reported as saying.
Naik caused a stir in Malaysia earlier this year following news that he had been granted permanent resident status.
Authorities in India have accused the 52-year-old of funding terrorism, and India’s National Intelligence Agency (NIA) last week filed charges against him in court, the Times of India reported.
Naik was charged with heading an “unlawful association” and inciting youths to commit acts of terror and join global outfits such as the Islamic State (IS).
The NIA said Naik had also “deliberately insulted” the religious beliefs of Hindus, Christians and Islamic sects like Shia, Sufi and Barelvi, and that his speeches had influenced recruits to the IS cause.
Naik’s Mumbai-based NGO, Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), was banned by the Indian government in 2016.
It was said to have conspired with Naik to promote enmity and hatred between different religious groups, and to insult different religions and Islamic sects that did not subscribe to Wahhabism