After reports emerged which said that the Dhaka attackers were inspired by Mumbai-based controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik, protests broke out on Thursday outside his office. Members of Raza Academy, a Sunni organisation which promotes Islamic beliefs staged a protest against Dhaka attacks and Naik after morning prayers in Mumbai.

“Today is the holy day of Eid-Ul-Fitr. What we have witnessed are many terror attacks in different locations. We are protesting against those who are spreading terror. Islam is a religion of peace. Those who are doing terror attacks aren’t Muslim. Zakir Naik should be banned. His speeches are very controversial,” said Mohd Rafiq Qadri Rizvi, a member, reports ABP Live.

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The protest comes a day after Shiv Sena sought action against Naik in which Sena MP Arvind Sawant asking Union Home Minister to seek a ban on Naik and his organisation.

“People whose language propagates violence against the nation’s unity should be banned. Islam teaches love and peace. But everyday is a day of high alert now. I appeal to the Home Minister that action needs to be taken. How do young children in our country join ISIS? So, may be we are failing somewhere….we should know the seriousness of this situation. Radicalised minds can now take any step. In the name of Islam, they are slaughtering people who cannot recite verses,” Sawant said in a letter to Union Home Minister.

b’A file photo of Zakir Naik | Source: PTI’

Naik has rubbished the allegations and has said that Islamic State terrorists are actually enemies of Islam. He has, however, said that since his maximum followers are from Bangladesh, it is not a matter of surprise that the terrorists knew him. “Such a person would be a hardcore fan of Prophet Muhammad. Does that mean Prophet Muhammad told him to kill people,” he asked, adding that Quran clearly mentions that when a person kills another irrespective of his/her religion, it is considered as the murder of the whole humanity, reports Indian Express.

Keeping in mind the threat perception, Mumbai Police have beefed up Naik’s security to avoid any untoward incident. 

(With inputs from PTI)