‘Not true govt has refused Zakir Naik asylum’

Preacher Dr Zakir Naik has been granted permanent residence in Malaysia. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: A government source has denied a news report from India that Putrajaya is refusing to offer Dr Zakir Naik asylum and has told the controversial preacher to leave Malaysia.

“Not true,” the home ministry source told FMT.

Earlier today, Indian news site news18.com reported that Putrajaya had refused Naik asylum and asked him to leave the country.

This comes after the Indian government provided evidence against Naik, who has been granted permanent residence in Malaysia, it said.

The site also reported that the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia have refused Naik asylum.

Earlier this month, the Indian government said it had been informed by Putrajaya that its request for the extradition of Naik was “under consultation”.

Its external affairs ministry said New Delhi was continuing to pursue the matter not only through the Malaysian government but also through its high commission in Kuala Lumpur.

Indian authorities have filed money-laundering charges involving about RM115 million against the 53-year-old televangelist.

Naik has also been accused of inciting enmity and hatred between different religious communities in his preaching.

Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said last month that Malaysia had the right not to extradite Naik if he was not going to be accorded justice.