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Muslim Council: Zakir Naik exclusion order serious error of judgment
Saturday, June 19, 2010 10:51:58 AM, ummid.com Staff Reporter
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Malegaon: Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) deplores Home Secretary Theresa May’s uncharacteristically intemperate move to ban the renowned Indian mainstream Islamic scholar Dr. Zakir Abdul-Karim Naik, from a speakers’ tour in the UK.
Zakir Naik has been banned an entry into UK apparently because of his “unacceptable behaviour” and that his visit “would not be conducive to the public good”.
According to a MCB official, the Home Secretary’s action serves to demonise the very voices within the world ready for debate and discussion.
"The tour would have been a golden opportunity for young Muslims who are eager to hear the true messages of Islam which promote understanding between communities", the official added.
There are a campaign going on against Dr. Zakir Naik following few of his statements that are regarded as controversial. Insiders say, some community leaders having vested interest and afraid of the popularity Dr. Naik is gaining, are indulging in dirty tactics to defame the preacher.
Meanwhile, Dr. Zakir Naik commenting on his reported views on terrorism and Osama bin Laden had said that they were quoted out of context.
“The purpose of this statement is in response to the recent press reports about my intended tour to the UK in June 2010, including the things I am supposed to have previously said including their context and my views about terrorism and violent extremism in the light of the beautiful faith of Islam...as a student of comparative religion, my work has involved engaging in constructive discussion with people of other major faiths, promoting similarities and converging values for a common platform of Peace using the commonalities that bind us all together....", Zakir Naik said in his response.
""It appears that Government has responded to a recent campaign of vilification against the scholar, ignoring what Dr Naik stated on 11th June 2010", Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain Dr Muhammad Abdul Bari said while expressing his grave concern at the decision.
"This exclusion order demonstrates the double standards practised by the government concerning freedom of speech. While preachers of hate such as Geert Wilders are free to promote their bigotry in this country, respected Muslim scholars such as Dr Naik are refused entry to the UK under false pretences. It is deeply regrettable and this is likely to cause serious damage to community cohesion in our country", he added.
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