The Enforcement Directorate on Friday registered a case of money laundering against controversial preacher Zakir Naik and his NGO, the Islamic Research Foundation, based on an FIR filed against both parties by the National Investigation Agency, ANI reported.
The NIA lodged the FIR against Naik and his organisation on November 18 for allegedly indulging in unlawful activities and promoting hatred between different religious groups through his speeches. An IRF member, however, had said that the FIR was illegal as another had been registered in 2012 for the same alleged crime, but the investigation had been closed.
On November 15, the foundation was banned for a period of five years under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for Naik’s “objectionable and subversive” speeches. Naik had said he would challenge the decision, and that his legal teams were considering all possible options to counter the restrictions imposed on his NGO.
The televangelist has been under scrutiny since allegations arose that he had inspired one of the terrorists behind the Dhaka cafe attack on July 1. He was also accused of meeting two brothers from Kerala who were among those who went missing in West Asia and are feared to have joined the Islamic State group. The police had also arrested a few members of the IRF for allegedly radicalising men from Kerala to join the terror outfit.