PETALING JAYA: PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang has come to the defence of Dr Zakir Naik, saying Muslim critics of the embattled preacher are not qualified to question his credentials to speak on comparative religion.
“It is unfortunate that there are Muslims who are ignorant of the Quran and are immature,” Hadi said as ruling politicians broke ranks with Dr Mahathir Mohamad yesterday over Putrajaya’s decision not to hand over Naik to Indian authorities.
Praising Mahathir for standing firm in his decision, Hadi said those calling for Naik’s deportation had run out of issues and resorted to name-calling.
“The argument calling for action against him must be rejected. It does not answer his argument. Stop coming up with unrelated arguments.”
Hadi said Naik had done his research on comparative religion, including memorising different religious texts in their original language.
Calls for Naik to be sent back to India grew following a recent series of lectures he gave in Kelantan, one of which touched on the loyalty of Malaysian Hindus to Mahathir.
He claimed that Malaysian Hindus are more loyal to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi than to Mahathir despite receiving “100 times” more rights than Muslims in India.
He was also quoted as saying that Chinese in Malaysia were also considered “guests” in Malaysia.