Mumbai : The controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik’s Peace TV went off the air in Bangladesh on Monday after authorities cancelled its broadcast rights. Bangladesh government banned the broadcasting of India-based controversial preacher Zakir Naik’s TV Channel on Sunday, after reports that his “provocative” speeches inspired some of the militants who carried out the country’s worst terror attack at a cafe here.
The decision to ban the Mumbai-based preacher’s ‘Peace TV Bangla’ was taken during a special meeting of Cabinet Committee on Law and Order, Industry Minister Aamir Hossain Amu, who chaired the meeting said. In the meeting, attended by senior ministers and top security officials, it was also decided to monitor the sermons given during the Friday prayers to check whether any provocative lectures are delivered, Amu told reporters.
Naik’s speeches are believed to have inspired some of the Bangladeshi militants, who killed 22 people, mostly foreigners, at an upscale restaurant in Dhaka on 1st July . The government also appealed to the Imams in the country to deliver lectures in line with real Islamic ideology of denouncing terrorism and extremism, the minister said.
One of the slain attackers of the terrorist attack in Dhaka’s high-security Gulshan area, the 22-year-old Rohan Imtiaz quoted Naik in a Facebook post in January this year where he urged “all Muslims to be terrorists.”
The activities of Naik’s Mumbai-based Islamic Research Foundation are also under the scanner of Indian Home Ministry amid allegations that funds from abroad received by it have been spent on political activities and inspiring people towards radical views.
The Maharashtra government has also ordered a probe into the sermons by the 50-year-old televangelist that has kicked up a storm. Britain and Canada have banned Naik from visiting the two countries several years ago while Malaysia banned his lectures fearing that they could instigate inter-racial tensions.
The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has issued an advisory to cable and DTH operators to immediately stop broadcast or transmission of non-permitted channels such as Peace TV.
The I & B Ministry also held a crucial meeting on the issue on Friday and said that if Cable Operators are showing unregulated channels then District Monitoring Committees under Cable TV Act can take actions against them.