Centre wants in-camera hearing on ban on Zakir Naik’s NGO
Taking into account the sensitivity of the case, the Union government has said that the proceedings relating to the ban on Islamic preacher Zakir Naik's Non-Governmental Organisation Islamic Research Foundation must be in-camera. After the ban was imposed on the IRF, the special tribunal has been examining the matter as per norms.
The Centre feels that since the matter is sensitive in nature, the proceedings must not be made public. It was said that if the proceedings are made public then it could lead to communal tension. The tribunal, after deliberating on the matter will pass an order on February 20. During the course of the arguments, the tribunal indicated that such proceedings are normally held in-camera.
Meanwhile, the Centre defended the ban stating that the NGO was involved in activities opposed to the law. The Centre placed before the tribunal three affidavits which had material defending the ban. The NIA had probed into the functioning of the NGO after investigators claimed that the IRF was involved in conversions. It was also pointed out that the NGO had received funds without following the norms. Naik's speech may have influenced people to take to terror were also part of the order that imposed the ban.