The recent terrorist attacks in Bangladesh had left many stunned. However, a controversy was in the making when the Bangladeshi authorities found out that one of the attackers was an ardent follower of ZakirNaik on Facebook and had in fact, encouraged Naik’s views on ‘all Muslims must be terrorists’ on his own page.
Following this, the Indian government has taken action on the Mumbai based doctor who is also an active Islamic preacher, notorious the world over for his public talks on Islam. However, this is not the first time Naik has courted controversy with his speeches. Let us examine a few more instances in the past when his words put him in deep trouble with clerics, scholars and authorities worldwide.
Who is ZakirNaik?
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Born in 1965, Dr. ZakirNaik is the founder as well as president of the IRF (Islamic Research Foundation). He is also the founder of the Islamic International School which is said to cater to Islamic scholars and students. However, Naik is known more for being an ardent Islamist preacher, clearing misconceptions about Islam via talks and speeches on public platforms around the world. His skill as an orator is also evident from the way he manages to quote verses from several religious scriptures and books when trying to give Islam an aura of supremacy over other religions.
Courting Controversies with his speeches
Although he manages to enthrall the crowds with his oratorical skills, Naik has often come under the scanner for his remarks on Islamic ideologies that he propagates as needed in today’s modern world. For instance, his recent remark on ‘All Muslims should be terrorists’ created a hue and cry in India as politicians lobbied to label him as anti-nationalist and his speeches as a threat to the nation’s integrity. However, Naik was quick to reply that he was misquoted by the media, thus kicking off a battle between himself and the media house that telecasted his interview.
Let’s take a look at some of the other times when Naik landed in trouble with his remarks on Islam and its supremacy over other religions.
On Siding with Osama Bin Laden
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Naik is said to have sided with Osama Bin Laden in the case the latter terrorizes America. His words related to the same were as follows.
“If he is terrorizing America, the terrorist, biggest terrorist, I’m with him. Every Muslim should be a terrorist. The thing is that if he is terrorizing the terrorist, he is following Islam.Whether he is or not, I don’t know. Now don’t go around outside saying ZakirNaik is for Osama Bin Laden. I don’t know him personally. I don’t know what he is. I cannot base my judgment only on news. But, you as Muslims, without checking up laying allegations is also wrong.”
Even as several countries around the world are embracing LGBT rights and legalizing same sex marriages, Naikstands firm on his belief that homosexuality is a disease. His words pertaining to the same:
“LGBT Community are patients suffering from a sinful mental problem. It’s because they watch pornographic movies. The TV channels are to be blamed.”
On Women’s Education
In spite of being a follower of Islam in today’s modern world, ZakirNaik still feels women should remain at home. When asked about girl’s education, his reply was:
“Girls shouldn’t be sent to schools where they lose their virginity by the time they pass out. Schools should be shut down. They should not be allowed to wear gold ornaments.”
On Domestic Violence
Islam is known to provide equal if not more rights for women. However, Naik does not believe so and is said to revealed in one of his lectures,
“If you have a son, and he wants to jump from the roof, you will admonish him. As far as the family is concerned, a man is the leader. So, he has the right”.
By saying so, he reiterated the fact that Allah had given men the permission to beat women, albeit lightly!
On Sex Slaves
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Dr. ZakirNaik also believes that Muslim men are allowed to have sex slaves. In his speech regarding the same, he is said to have told,
“There are many verses in the Quran which say you can have sex with your wife and with whatever your right hand possesses.”
On Inter-Religious Marriages (a Muslim girl marrying a Hindu boy)
In one of his speeches, Naik is said to have responded to an individual’s query on inter-religious marriages with the following words,
“If you have a vehicle where one tyre is of a cycle and the other is of a truck, then the vehicle will not run. Allah will never forgive her unless she issues an ultimatum to her husband to accept Islam.”
On Non-Muslims in Islamic States
Although he claims to preach about comparative religion, ZakirNaik has often proved that he is an Islamic supremacist with his words. One such instance is when he said the following words with respect to the construction of temples and churches in non-Islamic states.
“How can we allow this when their religion is wrong and their worshipping is wrong?”
On People leaving Islam
Naik has more than once reiterated the fact that those who decide to leave Islam for another religion will need to be given the death penalty. In his own words,
“If he or she leaves Islam, then capital punishment is the most humane punishment for him/her.”
On Darwin’ theory of evolution
ZakirNaik feels that Darwin’s theory of evolution is only a theory without established facts and is completely baseless. He goes on to say,
“There is not a single statement in the Holy Qur’an, which Science has proved wrong yet. Hypothesis go against the Qur’an – theories go against the Qur’an. There is not a single scientific fact, which is mentioned in the Holy Qur’an which goes against established science – It may go against theory.”
Dr. ZakirNaik is an established medical doctor and Islamic preacher. Although he is said to propagate comparative religion via his speeches, many consider him to encourage Islamic supremacy with statements that go against his ideologies of Islam.