New Delhi, Oct 26: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has filed its chargesheet against Islamic preacher Zakir Naik in connection with case against him for inciting youngsters to join terror groups. Also Read - Separatist Leader Yasin Malik Produced Before NIA Court in Terror Funding Case
The NIA, in its 58-page chargesheet, declared Zakir Naik an absconder and booked him for inciting terror and communal hatred. Also Read - Samjhauta Express Blast Case: All Four Accused Including Aseemanand Acquttied by Special NIA Court in Haryana
The 51-year-old televangelist, who is currently abroad, is being probed under terror and money-laundering charges by the NIA. He fled from India on July 1, 2016, after terrorists in neighbouring Bangladesh claimed that they were inspired by his speeches. Also Read - 2008 Mumbai Terror Attack Plotter Tahawwur Hussain Rana in Process of Being Extradited to India, 'Full Cooperation' From Trump Govt
The NIA had on November 18, 2016, registered a case against Naik at its Mumbai branch under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. His Mumbai-based NGO, Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), has already been declared an unlawful association by the Union Home Ministry.
Naik is said to have acquired citizenship of Saudi Arabia but this has not been confirmed yet. (Also Read: Zakir Naik’s NGO IRF banned for 5 years)
The controversial preacher has been accused of spreading hatred by his provocative speeches, funding terrorists and laundering several crores of rupees over the years.
Naik, a medical doctor-turned preacher, during his interactions with the Indian media from broad has repeatedly denied all the charges.
The Interpol was approached against Naik after a year- long probe during which the NIA gathered evidence on his IRF and Peace TV being used to allegedly promote hatred between different religious groups.
Besides banning his NGO, the central government has taken his TV channel off air.
The passport of Naik was also been revoked by the Ministry of External Affairs at the request of the NIA earlier this year.