Notice to The Pioneer for calling Zakir Naik 'Salafist terror preacher'
New Delhi: Recently Enforcement Directorate seized some properties of Dr. Zakir Naik in an alleged money-laundering case. The news, based on a PTI report, was published by newspapers and electronic media describing Dr. Naik as a “controversial preacher” but The Pioneer, while publishing the same news in its front page on 20 January, 2019, described Dr. Naik as “Salafist terror preacher”.
Taking sou motu cognisance of this, Delhi Minorities Commission has sent a notice to the Editor of the Pioneer, saying that “this is a gross misuse of media freedoms to defame a person who is still an accused and no court verdict has been passed in the case. The said preacher is at best an accused in a case of money-laundering and not terror funding or preaching.
DMC has directed the Editor of Pioneer to enlighten DMC how it has arrived at the conclusion that Dr. Naik is a “Salafist terror preacher”.
The DMC notice further said, “If this a mistake by an overzealous editor of the page, you should print a clarification in a prominent place saying that Dr Zakir Naik is only an accused in a money-laundering case, and supply a copy of the same to this Commission.” The Commission has asked the Editor of The Pioneer to reply by 11 February.