In an exclusive conversation with Republic TV, the Malaysian Democratic Action Party's Member of Parliament Ramkarpal Singh on Tuesday raised questions over the decision of his government. The Malaysian government had decided to go against the request made by the Indian authorities and had stated that they would not extradite Zakir Naik from Malaysia. Mr. Singh whose party is a part of the ruling coalition headed by Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, has asked the Malaysian government to take a 'strong stand' on the controversial Islamic preacher who is currently living in Malaysia.
Malaysian MP Ramkarpal stated that he failed to understand why the Malaysian government had made so many u-turns on the extradition of Zakir Naik. Many ministers have been oscillating between supporting and reprimanding Naik.
“I am a bit baffled myself, I don't know why the reason for this u-turn on his position. I think it is necessary for the government to take a strong stand rather than taking a stand that creates so much confusion”, said Mr. Singh.
The MP and lawyer from Bukit Gelugor constituency rejected Naik's apologies for his controversial statements on the Hindu and Chinese communities living in Malaysia. He said: “The point is investigation ought to be taken in relation to certain statement he had made in the past and an apology is immaterial to the question whether there has been an offence.” In August this year, Naik was grilled by the Malaysian police for his alleged provocative speech.
Mr. Singh said that his country has had a long history of a diverse population living together with peace and harmony and, people like Zakir Naik can cause trouble with their speeches.
“I think he is a very influential person. If his statements are sensitive, it can cause problems in this country,” Ramkarpal Singh stated while expressing his concerns over the nature of statements by Naik on Hindus and Chinese community. Adding further he stated that his speeches can “potentially cause friction” in Malaysia's “delicate system”.
The Malaysian MP informed that the issue of Zakir Naik will be raised again in the Parliament. “The foreign minister has confirmed their position, however, I will keep pushing this in the parliament for the government to consider India's application to extradite him”, asserted Mr. Singh.