Kuala Lumpur: Zakir Naik on Tuesday apologised to Malaysians for making racist comments, after the radical Indian televangelist was grilled for 10 hours by police, which banned him from any public activities in the multi-ethnic country.
The official Bernama news agency reported that Naik, wanted by Indian authorities since 2016 for alleged money laundering and inciting extremism through hate speeches, issued an apology for the hurt caused by his controversial remarks against Malaysian Hindus and Chinese during a talk on August 8.
Naik's apology came after he was questioned by police for a second time for allegedly making provocative remarks, in a session which lasted about 10 hours at the police headquarters.
The 53-year-old radical preacher was first questioned on Friday following the contentious remarks made in his speech against Hindus where he questioned their loyalty to the country and took a jibe at the Chinese community as “old guests” in Malaysia.
CID director Huzir Mohamed said Zakir arrived at the police headquarters at 3:15 pm on Monday accompanied by his lawyer. He left at 1:30 am on Tuesday, the report said. Mohamed said Naik was being probed under Section 504 of the Penal Code for intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace.
Police spokesman Asmawati Ahmad said on Tuesday that all public activities involving Naik are banned to “avoid any controversy and hostility”. After his controversial remarks, Naik was already banned from making public statements in the Malaysian states of Johor, Selangor, Penang, Kedah, Sarawak and Melaka.
In his apology, Naik said that it was never his intention to upset anyone and hoped Malaysians would not harbour ill feelings towards him....