Did Zakir Naik inspire the bomber Shareeq? Defendants downloaded speeches by the fugitive, sources say

In the recent development of the Mangaluru blast probe, Republic has learned that defendant Shareeq was allegedly inspired to engage in terrorist activities by Islamic preacher and Indian refugee Zakir Naik. According to the sources, over 50 videos of Zakir Naik’s speeches were found on Shareeq’s phone.

According to the sources, Shareeq made a note stating that Zakir Naik was the real inspiration for him to carry out all the terror atrocities across the state of Karnataka. Since Naik’s speeches are banned in India, Shareeq downloaded them from the dark web and watched them over and over for months. The Mangaluru attack suspect also used the fugitive Naik’s speech and video to radicalize other people. It is important to mention that Zakir Naik has been accused of radicalizing Muslim youth through his hate speech.

Notably, Shareeq and his gang have also received and conducted online cryptocurrency transactions via the dark web, as the physical handling of cash would have raised suspicions. The dark web was used as it will be difficult to track the IP address and transaction details. The funds were likely wired and funded by the defendants’ caretakers, who are based in the Middle East. It is important to mention that not only Mangaluru but also Shareeq allegedly used cryptocurrency funding in the explosion of Shivamogga and Mysuru.

‘Indian govt must pressure Malaysia govt for Zakir Naik’: BJP’s S Prakash

Speaking to the Republic about this development, Karnataka Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader S. Prakash said, “Zakir Naik is on the run. Its observation notice has already been issued by the central government. His doctrine inspires many youngsters to take up terrorist activities unfortunate. He calls himself a religious preacher but instead preaches humanity, his speeches are against an ideology he doesn’t believe in.”

He added: “The Indian government should put more pressure on the Malaysian government and even the other Islamic nations protecting Zakir Naik from deportation to India.”

In particular, Naik, a televangelist, fled India in 2016 and moved to Malaysia, where he was granted permanent residency. India had submitted an extradition request to Malaysia. He is banned in the UK and Canada for his hate speech against other religions. Additionally, Naik’s Islamic Research Foundation was banned by India in late 2016 for encouraging and assisting its followers in “encouraging or encouraging animosity, hatred or malevolence between different religious communities and groups”.



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