Mufti Zakir Naik- A Terrorist?
Waythamurthi the self righteous
Waythamurthi the self-proclaimed leader of Hindraf (the Hindu Rights Action Force) a self-proclaimed human rights organization is once more at it. Waythamurthi has been circulating offensive material with respect to a ‘firebrand’ Muslim cleric from India Zakir Naik. Zakir like many other Indian activists of many different religious and political persuasions is under the watch of the Indian government security apparatus. That of itself does not disqualify him or any other individual from visiting or taking up residence in Malaysia. Neither is the fact of surveillance by the Indian authorities evidence of guilt. Only a competent court sitting to hear all the facts can come to such a conclusion as that which Waythamurthi and Hindraf have on Naik.
The fact of Waythamurthi speaking ostensibly on behalf of ‘all Indians’ in Malaysia quoting the authority of the government of India is of itself offensive. The government of Malaysia is sovereign as far as its laws and the application of those laws is concerned. A mere suspicion or allegation or even for that matter the commission of an offence by any person on foreign soil does not of itself constitute a bar to entering Malaysia or taking up residence in Malaysia. Such matters are decided by the appropriate minister acting in his very wide discretion.
Some examples of Waythamurthi’s ignorance
Malaysia is a Muslim majority country. Any lawyer worth his salt ought to know that. The fact that a Mufti from a foreign country, the subject of foreign sanctions is invited to Malaysia to preach is not an offence nor does it constitute a threat of any kind. Most of all it gives Waythamurthi no right or grounds to demand anything, any action against Naik from the deputy prime minister and the prime minister on the basis of Waythamurthi’s unsubstantiated claims.
The Islamic republic of Iran is known to arm and fund the Hamas movement in the middle-east. The US has very clear views on that subject. Iranian preachers have nonetheless visited the US and Europe without let or hindrance in recent times.
Iran has in fact engaged in the execution of dissidents in foreign soil-namely France- where its former prime minister Shapur Baktia is believed to have been killed by its agents under the noses of French security. Should Malaysia therefore ban Iranians and their government from entering Malaysia? If so on what basis? The US government has funded Regime Change activities in Malaysia. Do we sever our ties with the US and deny entry to Hillary Clinton?
Is Narendra Modi a Terrorist by Waythamurthi’s standards?
Closer to home-Waythamurthi’s home it seems- the current prime minister Narendra Modi was accused of being the master mind or at least complicit in the murder of over 2000 Muslim Indians in 2002. The allegations of culpability against Narendra Modi were made by the Indian government first then by the US and other western countries applying the same standards Waythamurthi and the Indian government apply to Mufti Zakir Naik.
Modi was banned from entering the US for over a decade till he became prime minister of India in 2015. Two things immediately come to mind about this here. Is the Indian government by Waythamurthi’s standards therefore a terrorist government because Modi now rules? Should the Indian mission in Kuala Lumpur be stripped of its diplomatic status and sent home? Should Indian Hindu preachers be denied entry or residency in Malaysia? Should they be sent home?
The report into the 2002 Gujarat anti Muslim riots identified several Hindu preachers and clergy members who stirred up and actively participated in then directed those riots in which 2000 Indians (of Muslim faith) were killed. Should Hindu temples therefore by Waythamurti’s standards be reduced to rubble for the threat they pose not only to Muslims but to Christians as well?
The Bajrang Dal a Hindu organization was behind the brutal and grizzly murders of a Christian missionary Graham Staines his wife and his children in 2005? Why should not the Hindus be restrained and denied the same rights Waythamurthi seeks to deny Naik for? Was the Bajrang Dal’s actions not a proven act of terrorism by Hindus? Waythamurthi a lawyer ought to know that the lower standard of suspicion alone cannot and should not decide Mufti Zakir Naik’s fate?
Why Waythamurthi should mind his own business and serve his constituents the Tamils
Waythamurthi would do well to let the government and its responsible officers take charge of monitoring the movements and the activities of Mufti Naik. Hindraf has no valid mandate to demand anything from government especially considering its dismal performance post 2007 and since when it did have a mandate and failed to perform.
Having won his seat in parliament, Waythamurthi has gone from pillar to post squandering the best of opportunities in his sight by playing the role of martyr and the persecuted taking the moral high ground where he does not belong. His conduct has paid no dividends to the Indian community which he claims is the most disadvantaged of all in Malaysia.
There is a saying that comes from the Christian bible which finds place in Hinduism as well. It goes like this:” remove first from your eye the beam before you seek to remove the speck from your brother’s eye”.
There is an election looming around the corner. Are the Tamils to expect more of this sort of emotion driven sensationalism from the so called custodians of the Indian community parading as guardians of internal security and Human Rights? Are the Indians to be subjected to more indulgences by their so called leaders whilst the other two communities eschew self-righteous behavior, sanctimonious rhetoric and charge ahead snatching for themselves the economic, educational and social spoils the Najib Razak government has to offer them?
Does not Zakir Naik qualify for protection of his Human Rights?
To Waythamurthi we ask: what are your plans for your community beyond the next general elections? Where is the leadership your people deserves?
If Hindraf is indeed a human rights organization as Waythamurthi proclaims it to be does not Zakir Naik also deserve to have his human rights and rights to free speech respected and protected? He has not been convicted of anything other than by Hindraf’s slanderous allegations against him relying on selective Indian propaganda and on untested allegations against him by a corrupted Bangladesh government.
Why blame the activities of a group of Bangladeshi students trained at Monash university on Zakir Naik’s teachings? Is that not like blaming Jesus Christ and Bill Graham for the misguided actions of the IRA, the British, the Americans and the Australians against the Afghans and Irakis, Vietnamese and others they have invaded and subjugated to brutality, plunder and conquest over the ages?
Dangers of Nationalist Religious Propaganda
It may be worth note in passing here that India’s former Minister of External Affairs, Jaswant Singh a decorated General of its armed forces and scholar, a Hindu and member of the Bharatya Janata Party (A Hindu Nationalist Party) admitted in a thesis he wrote that Mohamed Ali Jinnah the founder of Pakistan was in fact a nationalist and a patriot. The vast majority of Indians despise him even today as a result of Indian nationalist propaganda. Jaswant was expelled from the party for an independent assessment of Jinnah. How sad indeed. A lesson on Indian propaganda and self-righteousness.
Waythamurthi is now at the crossroads of his own lacklustre career. The path he takes from hereon will decide how the Tamils of Malaysia will fare in the Malaysia of tomorrow. Will they continue pointing an accusing finger at everyone else whilst the remaining three fingers on their hands point silently towards them? Or will they take the bull by the horns, be bold and plan new strategies making allies with Malays willing to help and map out a more prosperous and secure future for the Tamils? The ball is in your court Waythamurthi.