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Zakir Naik

Zakir Naik
Zakir Naik in Maldives
Born (1965-10-18) 18 October 1965
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Residence Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Education Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery
Alma mater
Occupation President of Islamic Research Foundation, public speaker
Years active 1991–present
Known for Dawah, Peace TV
Board member of Islamic Research Foundation
Religion Islam
Spouse(s) Farhat Naik[1]
Awards King Faisal International Prize for Service to Islam, 2015

Zakir Naik (born 18 October 1965 in Mumbai, India) is an Indian Islamic preacher and "televangelist",[2][3] who has been called an "authority on comparative religion",[4] "perhaps the most influential Salafi ideologue in India",[5] and "the world's leading Salafi evangelist".[6] He is the founder and president of the Islamic Research Foundation (IRF),[7][8] and founder of the "comparative religion" Peace TV channel, through which he reaches a reported 100 million viewers.[6][9] Unlike many Islamic preachers, his lectures are colloquial,[10] given in English not Urdu or Arabic,[6] and he wears a suit and tie rather than traditional garb.[10]

Before becoming a public speaker, he trained as a medical doctor.[3] He has published booklet versions of lectures on Islam and comparative religion. Although he has publicly disclaimed sectarianism in Islam,[11] he is regarded by some as an exponent of the Salafi ideology,[12][13] and some as radical Islamic televangelist propagating Wahhabism.[14][15][16][17][18]


  • Biography 1
  • Lectures and debates 2
  • Recognition 3
  • Views 4
    • Biological evolution 4.1
    • Apostasy 4.2
    • Propagation of other faiths in Islamic states 4.3
    • Terrorism 4.4
    • Views on female slaves 4.5
  • Other countries 5
    • Visit to Australia and Wales 5.1
    • 2010 exclusion from the UK and Canada 5.2
    • Visit to Malaysia in 2012 5.3
  • Reception, awards, titles and honors 6
  • Criticism 7
  • See also 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10


Zakir Naik was born in Mumbai, Maharastra, India. Later he enrolled at Kishinchand Chellaram College, before studying medicine at Topiwala National Medical College and Nair Hospital and later the University of Mumbai, where he obtained a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery (MBBS).[7] His wife, Farhat Naik, works for the women's section of the IRF.[19]

In 1991 he started working in the field of Dawah, and founded the Islamic Research Foundation.[20] Naik says he was inspired by Ahmed Deedat, an Islamic preacher, having met him in 1987.[21] (Naik is sometimes referred to as "Deedat plus", a label given to him by Deedat himself.)[21][22]

Naik is the founder of the Islamic International School in Mumbai.[23] and United Islamic Aid, which provides scholarship to poor and destitute Muslim youth.[24]

The Islamic Research Foundation website describes Naik as "the ideologue and driving force behind Peace TV Network".[25]

Naik was a board member of the London based, Islamic Education and Research Academy.

Lectures and debates

Naik has held many debates and lectures around the world. Anthropologist Thomas Blom Hansen has written that Naik's style of memorising the Quran and Hadith literature in various languages, and his related missionary activity, has made him extremely popular in Muslim circles.[26] Many of his debates are recorded and widely distributed in video and DVD media and online. His talks are usually recorded in English and broadcast on weekends on several cable networks in Mumbai's Muslim neighbourhoods, and on the Peace TV channel, which he co-produces.[27][28] Topics he speaks on include: "Islam and Modern Science", "Islam and Christianity", and "Islam and secularism". Peace TV channel has been banned in India since 2012.[29][30]

One of Naik's most-cited debates was with William Campbell in Chicago in April 2000, on the topic of "The Qur'an and the Bible: In the Light of Science".[31] On 21 January 2006 Naik held an inter-religious dialogue with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar in Bangalore about the concept of God in Islam and Hinduism.[32] In February 2011 Naik addressed the Oxford Union via video link from India.[33] Every year since November 2007 Naik has led a 10-day Peace Conference at Somaiya Ground, Sion, Mumbai. Lectures on Islam have been presented by Naik and twenty other Islamic speakers.[34]

Naik argues that scientific theories were prophesised by the Quran. For example, he says certain verses of the Quran accurately describe embryological development.[35]



Naik says that his goal is to "concentrate on the educated Muslim youth who have become apologetic about their own religion and have started to feel the religion is outdated".[26] He considers it a duty of every Muslim to remove perceived misconceptions about Islam and to counter what he views as the Western media's anti-Islamic bias in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States.[44] Naik has said that "despite the strident anti-Islam campaign, 34,000 Americans have embraced Islam from September 2001 to July 2002". According to Naik, Islam is a religion of reason and logic, and that the Quran contains 1000 verses relating to science, which he says explains the number of Western converts.[45] Some of his articles are published in magazines such as Islamic Voice.[46]

Biological evolution

Naik has said that the theory of evolution is "only a hypothesis, and an unproven conjecture at best".[47] According to Naik, most scientists "support the theory, because it went against the Bible – not because it was true."[48]


Naik has said that Muslims who convert from Islam should not necessarily receive death sentences, but that under Islamic rule those who leave Islam and then "propagate the non-Islamic faith and speak against Islam" should be put to death.[49][50] Another source states that according to Naik, "there is no death penalty for apostates in Islam, until, the apostate starts to preach his new religion: then he can be put to death."[6]

Propagation of other faiths in Islamic states

While he appreciates that people of other religions allow Muslims to freely propagate Islam in their country, Naik preaches that the dissemination of other religions within an Islamic state must be forbidden because (he believes) other faiths are incorrect, so their propagation is as wrong as it would be for an arithmetic teacher to teach that 2+2=3 or 5 instead of 2+2=4. Likewise, Naik argues, "regarding building of churches or temples, how can we allow this when their religion is wrong and when their worshipping is wrong?"[51]


Naik's views and statements on terrorism have at times been criticised in the media. Speaking of Osama bin Laden, Naik stated in a YouTube video that he would not criticise bin Laden because he had not met him and did not know him personally. He added that, "If bin Laden is fighting enemies of Islam, I am for him," and that "if he is terrorizing America – the terrorist, biggest terrorist – I am 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, but you as Muslims know that, without checking up, laying allegations is also wrong."[52] When Time hinted that this remark could have inspired Najibullah Zazi's terrorist activities, Naik insisted: "I have always condemned terrorism, because according to the glorious Koran, if you kill one innocent person, then you have killed the whole of humanity".[52]

In 2010, Naik said that he had been quoted out of context regarding the remarks on terrorism. "As far as terrorist is concerned", he said, "I tell the Muslims that every Muslim should be a terrorist.... What is the meaning of the word terrorist? Terrorist by definition means a person who terrorises. So in this context every Muslim should be a terrorist to each and every anti-social element. I'm aware that terrorist is more commonly used for a person who terrorises innocent human beings. So in this context no Muslim should ever terrorise a single innocent human being."[53]

In a lecture delivered on 31 July 2008 on Peace TV, Naik commented on the [54]

He has also attracted much publicity for declaring that "even a fool will know" that the

  • Official Channel on YouTube
  • Collection of booklets by Naik

External links

  1. ^ An evening with Mrs Naik
  2. ^ Hope, Christopher. "Home secretary Theresa May bans radical preacher Zakir Naik from entering UK". The Daily Telegraph. 18 June 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  3. ^ a b Shukla, Ashutosh. "Muslim group welcomes ban on preacher". Daily News and Analysis. 22 June 2010. Retrieved 16 April 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  4. ^ "Indian Islamic scholar Zakir Naik receives Saudi prize for service to Islam". PTI. 2 March 2015. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  5. ^ Swami, Praveen (2011). "Islamist terrorism in India". In Warikoo, Kulbhushan. Religion and Security in South and Central Asia. London, England: Taylor & Francis. p. 61.  
  6. ^ a b c d e f Daniyal, Shoaib (10 March 2015). "Why a Saudi award for televangelist Zakir Naik is bad news for India's Muslims". Retrieved 2013-12-03. 
  7. ^ a b "Dr. Zakir Naik". Islamic Research Foundation. Retrieved 16 April 2011.
  8. ^ a b c "Islamic Research Foundation". Retrieved 2013-12-03. 
  9. ^ a b "Saudi Arabia gives top prize to cleric who blames George Bush for 9/11". The Guardian. Agence France-Presse. 1 March 2015. Retrieved 1 July 2015. 
  10. ^ a b c Hubbard, Ben (2 March 2015). "Saudi Award Goes to Muslim Televangelist Who Harshly Criticizes U.S.". New York Times. Retrieved 1 July 2015. 
  11. ^ "Dr. Zakir Naik talks about Salafi's & Ahl-e Hadith".  
  12. ^ Swami, Praveen (2011). "Islamist terrorism in India". In Warikoo, Kulbhushan. Religion and Security in South and Central Asia. London, England: Taylor & Francis. p. 61.  
  13. ^ "Wahabi versus Sufi: social media debates". 
  14. ^ "Why Muslims protested against Zakir Naik at the IICC in Delhi". 
  15. ^ "Why a Saudi award for televangelist Zakir Naik is bad news for India’s Muslims". 
  16. ^ "Why do Muslims hate Dr Zakir Naik?". 
  17. ^ "Zakir Naik, who said Muslims can have sex with female slaves, gets Saudi Arabia's highest honour". 
  18. ^ "Zakir Naik, Radical Islamist Video Evangelist". 
  19. ^ Ramanujan, Sweta. "Beyond veil: Am I not a normal Muslim girl?". Indian Express Group. 16 July 2004. Retrieved 16 April 2011. Archived 16 April 2011.
  20. ^ a b "Dr Zakir Naik vs (1) The Secretary of State for the Home Department (2) Entry Clearance Officer, Mumbai, India". British and Irish Legal Information Institute. 5 November 2010. Retrieved 21 July 2011.
  21. ^ a b Wahab, Siraj. "Spreading God's Word Is His Mission". Arab News. 1 July 2006. Retrieved 16 April 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  22. ^ Lloyd Ridgeon (7 March 2001). Islamic Interpretations of Christianity. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 213.  
  23. ^ "Conceived and Developed by Dr. Zakir Naik:". Islamic Research Foundation. Retrieved 16 April 2011. Archived 16 April 2011.
  24. ^ "Scholarships to Muslim students by United Islamic Aid". The Siasat Daily. The Siasat Daily. 24 May 2012. Retrieved 26 January 2015. 
  25. ^ "Dr Zakir Naik - President, IRF". Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  26. ^ a b Thomas Blom Hansen (2001). Wages of Violence: Naming and Identity in Postcolonial Bombay. Princeton University Press. p. 177.  
  27. ^ Mazumdar, Sudip. "Beaming In Salvation". MSNBC. 23 January 2006. Archived 18 January 2006.
  28. ^ Ahmad, Syed Neaz. "Peace TV Reaching 50 Million Viewers – Dr. Zakir Naik". Saudi Gazette. 23 February 2007. Archived 7 July 2007.
  29. ^ "Government puts 24 foreign 'hate channels' on notice for showing anti-India TV shows after intelligence alert". 
  30. ^ "Ban on Peace TV will be lifted soon: Zakir Naik". Arab News. 2014-07-06. Retrieved 2015-05-29. 
  31. ^ Ahmed, Khaled. "Word for word: William Campbell versus Zakir Naik". Daily Times (Pakistan). 8 January 2006. Retrieved 16 April 2011.
  32. ^ "No religion spreads violence: Sri Sri". The Times of India. 22 January 2006. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
    • For a video of the debate, see "Debate between Zakir Naik and Ravi Shanker". Internet Archive. Retrieved 7 August 2011.
  33. ^ "Controversial Islamic preacher speaks at Union". The Oxford Student. 17 February 2011. Retrieved 21 July 2011. Archived 21 July 2011.
    • See also: Syal, Rajeev. "Banned scholar Zakir Naik to address Oxford Union by satellite". The Guardian. 28 January 2011. Retrieved 7 August 2011.
  34. ^ Ahmad, Syed Neaz. "Justice, peace & unity: The cornerstone of Islam". Saudi Gazette. 31 March 2008. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  35. ^ Samuel, Geoffrey; Rozario, Santi. "Contesting science for Islam: the media as a source of revisionist knowledge in the lives of young Bangladeshis" (subscription required). Contemporary South Asia 18 (4): 427–441. December 2010. doi:10.1080/09584935.2010.526196.
  36. ^ "Zakir Naik named Islamic Personality of the Year".  
  37. ^ "Zakir Naik named Dubai's Islamic Personality of the Year".  
  38. ^ "Islamic personality award to be given to Zakir Naik".  
  39. ^ Cetak Emel Kawan (5 November 2013). "Berita Harian | Abdul Hamid, Zakir Naik dipilih Tokoh Maal Hijrah 2013". Retrieved 2013-12-03. 
  40. ^ الأمير خالد الفيصل يعلن أسماء الفائزين بجائزة الملك فيصل العالمية
  41. ^ a b The 500 Most Influential Muslims In The World (PDF).  
  42. ^ a b Schleifer, Prof. S. Abdallah, ed. (2013–2014). The 500 Most Influential Muslims In The World. 
  43. ^ a b "The Muslim 500".  
  44. ^ Hassan, Javid; Rasooldeen, Mohammed. "Media Urged to Counter Anti-Muslim Bias". Arab News. 9 October 2005. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  45. ^ Ghafour, P. K. Abdul. "New Muslims on the rise in US after Sept. 11". Arab News. 3 November 2002. Archived 17 September 2003.
  46. ^ See, for example: "Questions Commonly Asked by Non-Muslims – VI : Prohibition of Alcohol", "Was Islam Spread by the Sword?", "Are Ram And Krishna Prophets Of God?".
  47. ^ Attaullah, Munir. "View: The Muslim predicament II". Daily Times (Pakistan). 21 March 2007. Retrieved 21 July 2011.
  48. ^ Quran and Modern Science – Conflict or Conciliation? – Part Two – by Dr. Zakir Naik
  49. ^ "Maldivian renounces Islam, gets attacked by Zakir Naik audience". Haveeru Daily. 30 May 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  50. ^ Minivan News Transcript of Dr Zakir Naik's response to Mohamed Nazim; Location: Maafaanu stadium, Male', 10:30 pm Friday 28 May 2010, p. 4.
  51. ^ "Who's responsible for the stereotypes of Islam?" by Sudheendra Kulkarni; The Indian Express, 1 April 2007
  52. ^ a b Von Drehle, David; Ghosh, Bobby: "An Enemy Within: The Making of Najibullah Zazi". Time. p. 2. 1 October 2009. Retrieved 16 April 2011.
  53. ^ Deshmane, Akshay. "Zakir Naik will fight back as Canada bans him too". Daily News & Analysis. 23 June 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  54. ^ "Indian Muslim Cleric Zakir Naik: 9/11 Was Carried Out by George Bush Himself" (video of lecture). Middle East Media Research Institute. (subscription required). referring to various 9/11 Conspiracy Theories Transcript. Archived 7 August 2011.
    • See also: Leppard, David. "Muslim preacher of hate is let into Britain". The Times. 30 May 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011.
  55. ^ "Why Muslims protested against Zakir Naik at the IICC in Delhi". 
  56. ^ "Why do Muslims hate Dr Zakir Naik?". 
  57. ^ "Zakir Naik, who said Muslims can have sex with female slaves, gets Saudi Arabia's highest honour". 
  58. ^ "Zakir Naik, Radical Islamist Video Evangelist". The Huffington Post. 
  59. ^ "Zakir Naik wins Saudi prize for service to Islam". AFP. 2 March 2015. Retrieved 30 June 2015. 
  60. ^ Morello, Carol (6 March 2015). "U.S. denounces award-winning cleric who called 9/11 ‘inside job’". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 23 August 2015. 
  61. ^ a b c d "Indian preacher Zakir Naik is banned from UK". BBC News. 18 June 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011.
  62. ^ a b c Carlson, Kathryn Blaze. "Controversial Muslim televangelist Zakir Naik banned from Toronto conference". National Post. 22 June 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  63. ^ "Zakir Naik, who said Muslims can have sex with female slaves, gets Saudi Arabia's highest honour". 
  64. ^ "The Saudi king gave a prize to an Islamic scholar who says 9/11 was an ‘inside job’". 
  65. ^ "Everything you ever wanted to know about having sex with your slaves, but were too afraid to ask…". 
  66. ^ "Are Pakistani Christian and Hindu women daughters of a lesser God?". 
  67. ^ Das, Sushi. "Islam's gender debate at the fore". The Age. 30 August 2004. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  68. ^ Aly, Waleed. "The clash of ignorance". The Age. 6 August 2005. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  69. ^ Das, Sushi. "Between two worlds". The Age. 28 July 2005. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011. See author profile.
  70. ^ "Row over Islamic preacher". South Wales Echo. 16 August 2006. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
    • Bodinger, Katie. "Cleric's address hailed a success". South Wales Echo. 21 August 2006. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  71. ^ "Banning Dr Zakir Naik". 
  72. ^ Pinglay, Prachi. "Lawyers condemn UK-India Muslim preacher ban". BBC News. 22 June 2010. Retrieved 16 April 2011.
    • Press Trust of India. "UK ban politically motivated decision: Zakir Naik". Zee News. 23 June 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  73. ^ Akshay Deshmane "Zakir Naik will fight back as Canada bans him too" Archived 7 August at WebCite
  74. ^ "Legal challenge to ban on Muslim preacher Zakir Naik". BBC News. 19 June 2010. Retrieved 16 April 2011.
  75. ^ "Dr Zakir Naik Malaysian Tour 2012 ( PWTC ) Tickets, Kuala Lumpur". Eventbrite. Retrieved 2013-12-03. 
  76. ^ "Stay away from M'sia, Zakir". Free Malaysia Today. 2012-09-26. Retrieved 2013-12-03. 
  77. ^ "Zakir Naik’s host defends invite". 2012-09-19. Retrieved 2013-12-03. 
  78. ^ "The most powerful Indians in 2010: No. 81-90". The Indian Express. 5 February 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  79. ^ "The most powerful Indians in 2009: 80–84". The Indian Express. 9 March 2009. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  80. ^ a b c Swami, Praveen (2011). "Islamist terrorism in India". In Warikoo, Kulbhushan. Religion and Security in South and Central Asia. London, England: Taylor & Francis. pp. 52, 61–64.  
  81. ^ Dhume, Sadanand. "The Trouble with Dr. Zakir Naik". The Wall Street Journal. 20 June 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  82. ^ Desk, Web. "Zakir Naik named Dubai's Islamic Personality of the Year – The Express Tribune". Retrieved 2013-12-03. 
  83. ^ "Zakir Naik named Islamic Personality of the Year". 2013-07-29. Retrieved 2013-12-03. 
  84. ^ "'"India's Naik named 'Islamic Personality. 2013-07-30. Retrieved 2015-01-19. 
  85. ^ "Abdul Hamid is national-level Tokoh Maal Hijrah 2013". 2013-11-05. Retrieved 2015-01-19. 
  86. ^ "Dr. Zakir Naik wins King Faisal award". 2015-02-04. Retrieved 2015-02-04. 
  87. ^ a b Trouble with Dr. Zakir Naik|The Wall Street Journal Archived 7 August at WebCite
  88. ^ Wajihuddin, Mohammed. "The controversial Preacher". The Times of India. 27 June 2010. Retrieved 28 August 2013.
  89. ^ Singh, Khushwant. "Why Muslims lag behind". Hindustan Times. 3 November 2007. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  90. ^ Singh, Khushwant. "One man's belief is another's shackle". The Tribune. 5 March 2005. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  91. ^ Brekke, Torkel (2012). "Prophecy and Preaching". Fundamentalism: Prophecy and Protest in an Age of Globalization. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press. p. 97.  
  92. ^ Brekke, Torkel (2012). Fundamentalism: Prophecy and Protest in an Age of Globalization, Cambridge University Press, p. 97.
  93. ^ Ahmed, Khaled (24 December 2011). "'"Muslim view of 'decline.  
  94. ^ Gidwani, Deepak. "Storm over fatwa against scholar Zakir Naik". Daily News & Analysis. 8 November 2008. Retrieved 7 August 2011. Archived 7 August 2011.
  95. ^ Shattered certitudes and new realities emerge in terror link investigation by Praveen Swami, The Hindu, 8 July 2007 (paragraph 14)


See also

According to the New York Times quoting an anonymous Indian journalist, the Mumbai police have barred him from holding conferences in recent years "because he stirs controversy", and Indian satellite providers have refused to broadcast his television channel, Peace TV.[10]

Indian Journalist Shoaib Daniyal disagrees with Naik's belief that "Americans swap wives at will because they eat pigs which also swap their wives" He also points out that Naik's statement that Islam allows a man to marry multiple women because "in the USA, there are more women than men", disagrees with US demographic statistics.[6]

[80]".jihad, while his message has mesmerised violent Islamists, and his works "help make sense of the motivations of Indian recruits to the Lashkar-e-Taiba According to Swami, Naik's IRF has proved to be a "magnet" for figures linked to the [95]

Khaled Ahmed criticised Naik for "indirectly support[ing]" Al-Qaeda by referring to Osama bin Laden as a "soldier of Islam".[93] In 2008 an Islamic scholar in Lucknow, shahar qazi Mufti Abul Irfan Mian Firangi Mahali, issued a fatwa against Naik, saying that he supported Osama bin Laden, and that his teachings were un-Islamic. Naik claims his speeches were being taken out of context.[94]

Torkel Brekke, a professor of religious history in Norway, calls Naik a "very controversial figure" because of his rhetorical attack on other religions and other varieties of Islam. He writes that Naik is "strongly disliked" by many members of the Indian ulema for ignoring their authority and stating that anybody can interpret the Quran.[91] Conservative Deobandi mullahs have accused Naik of "destroying Islam" by driving Muslims away from the correct religious authorities.[92]

Indian journalist Khushwant Singh says he "disagree[s] with almost everything [Naik] has to say about misconceptions about Islam". Singh argues that Naik's pronouncements are "juvenile", and said "they seldom rise above the level of undergraduate college debates, where contestants vie with each other to score brownie points."[89] Singh also says Naik's audiences "listen to him with rapt attention and often explode in enthusiastic applause when he rubbishes other religious texts".[90]

The Times of India published a profile of Naik entitled "The controversial preacher" after he was banned from the United Kingdom. According to The Times, "the fact is that barring the band of Muslims whose bruised egos Naik suitably massages through his Islam supremacist talks, most rational Muslims and non-Muslims find his brand of Islam a travesty of the faith". The Times also claimed that "the Wahabi-Salafist brand of Islam, bankrolled by petro-rich Saudi Arabia and propagated by preachers like Naik, does not appreciate the idea of pluralism." The article quotes Muslim scholar Wahiduddin Khan: "Dawah, which Naik also claims to be engaged in, is to make people aware of the creation plan of God, not to peddle some provocative, dubious ideas as Naik does." He adds: "The wave of Islamophobia in the aftermath of 9/11 and the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan have only added to the Muslims' sense of injury. In such a situation, when a debater like Zakir Naik, in eloquent English, takes on preachers of other faiths and defeats them during debates, the Muslims' chests puff with pride. A community nursing a huge sense of betrayal and injustice naturally lionises anyone who gives it a sense of pride. Never mind if it's false pride."[88]

In The Wall Street Journal, Sadanand Dhume criticised Naik for recommending the death penalty for homosexuals and for apostasy from the faith.[87] He also criticised him for calling for India to be ruled by Shariah law. He added that, according to Naik, Jews "control America" and are the "strongest in enmity to Muslims." He maintained that Naik supports a ban on the construction of non-Muslim places of worship in Muslim lands as well as the Taliban's bombing of the Bamiyan Buddhas. Dhume argues that people reportedly drawn to Naik's message include Najibullah Zazi, the Afghan-American arrested for planning suicide attacks on the New York subway; Rahil Sheikh, accused of involvement in a series of train bombings in Bombay in 2006; and Kafeel Ahmed, the Bangalore man fatally injured in a failed suicide attack on Glasgow airport in 2007. He concluded that unless Indians find the ability to criticise such a radical Islamic preacher as robustly as they would a Hindu equivalent, the idea of Indian secularism would remain deeply flawed.[87]


Year of award or honour Name of award or honour Awarding organisation or government
2013 Islamic Personality of 2013[84] Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for World Peace
2013 Distinguished International Personality Award[85] Agong, Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah, Head of state of Malaysia
2013 Sharjah Award for Voluntary Work Sultan bin Mohamed Al-Qasimi, Ruler of Sharjah
2014 Insignia of the Commander of the National Order of the Republic of The Gambia[8] President of The Gambia Yahya Jammeh
2014 Honorary Doctorate (Doctor of Humane Letters)[8] University of The Gambia
2015 King Faisal international Prize[86] Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Naik was ranked 89 on The Indian Express's list of the "100 Most Powerful Indians in 2010".[78] He was ranked 82 in the 2009 edition.[79] According to Praveen Swami, Naik is "perhaps the most influential Salafi ideologue in India".[80] Sanjiv Buttoo says he is acknowledged as an authority on Islam, but is known for making negative remarks about other religions.[61] Sadanand Dhume writes that Naik has a "carefully crafted image of moderation", because of his gentle demeanour, his wearing of a suit and tie, and his quoting of scriptures of other religions.[81] He is also listed in the book The 500 Most Influential Muslims under honourable mention, in the 2009,[41] 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013/2014 [42] editions.[43] In July 2013, Naik was named as the Islamic Personality of the Year, announced by the 17th Dubai International Holy Quran Award (DIHQA).[82][83]

Reception, awards, titles and honors

[77] Naik delivered four lectures in Malaysia during 2012. The lectures took place in

Visit to Malaysia in 2012

Naik was denied entry into the United Kingdom and Canada in June 2010.[61][62] He was banned from entering the UK by Home Secretary Theresa May after arranging to give talks in London and Sheffield.[71] May said of the exclusion order, "Numerous comments made by Dr Naik are evidence to me of his unacceptable behaviour".[61] Naik argued that the Home Secretary was making a political decision and not a legal one, and his lawyer said the decision was "barbaric and inhuman". He also claimed that his comments were taken out of context.[72] Film producer Mahesh Bhatt supported Naik, saying the ban constituted an attack on freedom of speech.[73] It was reported that Naik would attempt to challenge the ruling in the High Court.[74] His application for judicial review was dismissed on 5 November 2010.[20] Naik was forbidden from entering Canada after Tarek Fatah, founder of the Muslim Canadian Congress, warned MPs of Naik's views.[62]

2010 exclusion from the UK and Canada

In August 2006 Naik's visit and conference in Cardiff caused controversy when Welsh MP David Davies called for his appearance to be cancelled. He said Naik was a "hate-monger", and that his views did not deserve a public platform; Muslims from Cardiff, however, defended Naik's right to speak in the city. Saleem Kidwai, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Wales, disagreed with Davies, stating that "people who know about him [Naik] know that he is one of the most uncontroversial persons you could find. He talks about the similarities between religions, and how should we work on the common ground between them", whilst also inviting Davies to discuss further with Naik personally in the conference. The conference went ahead, after the Cardiff council stated it was satisfied that he would not be preaching extremist views.[70]

In 2004 Naik, at the invitation of the Islamic Information and Services Network of Australasia, made an appearance at Melbourne University, where he argued that only Islam gave women true equality.[67] He said the more "revealing Western dress" makes women more susceptible to rape.[68] Sushi Das of The Age commented that "Naik extolled the moral and spiritual superiority of Islam and lampooned other faiths and the West in general", further criticising that Naik's words "fostered a spirit of separateness and reinforced prejudice".[69]

Visit to Australia and Wales

Other countries

Naik has expressed a view that Muslims can have sex with female slaves,[63][64][65] which he says is halal in Islam.[66]

Views on female slaves

[62][61] for speaking engagements.Canada and United Kingdom and he has been denied entry into the [60] but his expressed opinions on 9/11 have been denounced by the United States[59],King Faisal International Prize for Services to Islam Naik has won several awards for his preaching, including the 2015 [58][57][56][6][55][9]

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