New Delhi/Kuala Lumpur, Even as India continues its efforts to get the extradition of radical Islamic preacher Zakir Naik from Malaysia, reports in Malaysian capital said some ministers have raised the issue in the cabinet meeting and insisted that “a single individual” cannot decide whether he should be deported or not.
Malaysian Human Resources Minister M Kulasegaran said that on issues like this, “the rule of law” should be followed and not ‘a single individual or the government’ can decide whether Zakir Naik, wanted in India by NIA and Enforcement Directorate should be extradited or not.
“….the bottom line is that the Indian government must make that request,” the Minister has been quoted in the local media.
Two other ministers Gobind Singh Deo and Xavier Jayakumar had also raised the issue at the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday.
Mr Kulasegaran also said: ‘I assure the people that when I go to India and if I have the chance to meet the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, I will discuss this matter with him as well”.
The remarks from the Malaysian Minister came within hours, Raveesh Kumar, spokesman in the Ministry of External Affairs in Delhi, said: “Our extradition request is under consideration of the Malaysian authorities”.
He had also said, Indian government has “options” to explore vis-a-vis get the extradition of Naik, who was given permanent residency permit in Malaysia.
The developments come days after Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad outrightly rejected Indian government’s request and said Naik will not be deported till he violates any law in Malaysia.
According to sources, Malaysian government is likely to ask the attorney-general in their country to examine the Indian government’s request.
Naik, whose hate speech reportedly instigated Bangladeshi youths to undertake Dhaka siege in 2016, is wanted by Indian authorities over allegations of money laundering, hate speech and support to terrorism. Naik has, however, denied the charges.