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The decision to bar controversial Muslim preacher Dr Zakir Naik from speaking in public is timely, says former Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Rahim Noor. - NSTP/SADDAM YUSOFF

PETALING JAYA: The decision to bar controversial Muslim preacher Dr Zakir Naik from speaking in public is timely, says former Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Rahim Noor.

“It is a correct and timely decision, as this means the enforcement authorities, in particular the police, do not have to allocate extra manpower to monitor his speeches because of the fear that he may utter remarks that are related to religion and race.

“His recent speeches in Kelantan are bad for national security and the relationship among (the different) races,” he told the New Straits Times after an interview with TV3 Soal Rakyat at Sri Pentas, here, today.

This afternoon, Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Mazlan Mansor issued a directive to state police contingents nationwide to bar the Mumbai-born preacher from giving public talks.

The matter was confirmed by Inspector-General of Police Secretariat corporate communications head Datuk Asmawati Ahmad who said the order dated Aug 15 was issued on the basis of national security.

“All state police chiefs have been instructed to advise any party to cancel programmes which include Dr Zakir Naik.

“All activities involving Dr Zakir Naik in the states involving the respective (police) contingents are prohibited,” she said in a statement.

Several states have already banned Zakir from speaking.

He is under police investigation for intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace, having allegedly made controversial remarks against Malaysian Hindus and Chinese in Kelantan on Aug 3, prompting calls for him to be deported to India.

The preacher who is a permanent resident in Malaysia, has been wanted by Indian authorities since 2016 for alleged money laundering and inciting extremism through hate speeches.

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