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Zakir Naik Zakir Abdul Karim Naik Born October (age 44) Mumbai, Maharashtra, India Education Alma mater Occupation Years active Board member of Religion Spouse(s) Website IRF.net PeaceTV Kishinchand Chellaram College University of Mumbai Islamic preacher, Medical doctor 1991–present Islamic Research Foundation Islam Farhat Zakir Naik 18, 1965 (1965-10-18)
Zakir Abdul Karim Naik Hindi: जािकर अबदुल करीम नायक; born 18 October 1965) is a Muslim public speaker, and writer on the subject of Islam and other comparative religion. Naik is a medical doctor by profession, having attained a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery (MBBS) from the University of Mumbai.  Naik is the founder and president of the Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), a non-profit organization which also owns and broadcasts the free-to-air global Peace TV channel from Mumbai.
1 Biography 2 Lectures and debates
2.1 Peace Conferences 2.2 Writings 3.1 Fatwas
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4 References 5 External links
Naik was born in Mumbai, India. He attended St. Peter's High School (ICSE) in the city of Mumbai. Later he joined the Kishinchand Chellaram College and then studied medicine at Topiwala National Medical College and Nair Hospital in his native city and received his MBBS degree from the University of Mumbai. In 1991 he started working in the field of Da'wah, or proselytizing Islam. Naik says he was inspired by the late Ahmed Deedat, who had been active in the field of Da'wah for more than 40 years.  According to Naik, his goal is to "concentrate on the educated Muslim youth who have become apologetic about their own religion and have started to feel the religion is outdated", He considers it a duty of every Muslim to remove perceived misconceptions about Islam to counter, what he views as the Western media’s anti-Islamic bias in the aftermath of September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks upon the United States. He has lectured and authored several books on Islam and comparative religion, as well as those directed towards removing misconceptions about Islam. Some of his articles are also published in Indian magazines like the Islamic Voice. Anthropologist Thomas Blom Hansen has written that Naik's style of memorizing the Qur'an and hadith literature in various languages and related missionary activity has made him extremely popular in Muslim and non-Muslim circles. Many of his debates are recorded and widely distributed in video and DVD media as well as online. His talks are usually recorded in English, to be broadcast at weekends on several cable networks in Mumbai's Muslim neighborhoods, and on the channel Peace TV, which he co-promotes. Topics he speaks on include: "Islam and Modern Science", "Islam and Christianity", and "Islam and secularism". In an issue of Indian Express dated 22 February 2009, in a list of “100 Most Powerful Indians in 2009” Naik was ranked #82. In the special list of the "Top 10 Spiritual Gurus of India" Naik was
ranked #3, after Baba Ramdev and Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, and was the only Muslim on that list.
Lectures and debates
Naik has held many debates and lectures around the world as well as in Mumbai, India. One of Naik's most cited debates took place in Chicago in April, 2000 featuring Dr. William Campbell of Pennsylvania, USA on the topic "The Qur'an and the Bible: In the Light of Science". Delivering a lecture titled Why Westerners embrace Islam in November 2002 at King Fahd Hospital auditorium in Jeddah, Naik argued that Islam offers practical solutions to various problems facing the West such as adultery, alcoholism, and filial ingratitude. Naik also stated that "despite the strident anti-Islam campaign, 34,000 Americans have embraced Islam from September 2001 to July 2002." He cited an article by Edward Said published in the Time Magazine, which said that 60,000 books about Islam and the Orient have been written between 1800 and 1950 alone. In the lecture at Melbourne University, Naik argued that only Islam gave women true equality.  He stressed the importance of the headscarf by arguing that the more "revealing Western dress" makes women more susceptible to rape. On 21 January 2006, Naik held an inter-religious dialogue with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. The event was about the concept of God in Islam and Hinduism, the aim being to bring understanding between the two major religions of India, and at best to point out the commonalities between both Islam and Hinduism, such as how idolatry is prohibited. It was held in Bangalore, India with up to 50,000 attending at the Palace Grounds. Following a lecture by Pope Benedict XVI in September 2006, Naik offered to engage in a live public debate with him, but the Pope has not responded to this invitation. In a lecture delivered on 31 July 2008 on Peace TV, Naik argued that 9/11 "it is a blatant, open secret that this attack on the Twin Towers was done by George Bush himself", to give Bush reason to attack and control oil-rich countries. On 7th March, 2010 Zakir Naik debated (among others) Soha Ali Khan in a TV debate on the show We The People on NDTV.
Every year, since November 2007, Naik leads a 10-day "Peace Conference" at Somaiya Ground, Sion, Mumbai. Lectures on Islam were presented by Naik as well as twenty other Islamic scholars from around the world. Another prominent personality was the Malaysian politician, Anwar Ibrahim in 2008. During one of the lectures at the Peace Conference, Naik provoked anger among members of the Shia and Sunni community, when he mentioned the words “Radiallah ta'la anho” (meaning 'May Allah be pleased with him') after mentioning the name of Yazid I and made remarks that the battle of Karbala was political. Others, however, believed the comment was blown out of proportion. In November 2009, the IRF organized a 10-day international Islamic conference and exhibition titled 'Peace – the solution for humanity' at the Somaiya grounds in Mumbai. Lectures on Islam were presented by Naik as well as thirty other Islamic scholars from around the world.
In 2007, the Saudi Publishing house, Dar-us-Salam Publications, published two titles written by Naik, entitled "The Concept of God in Major Religions" and "The Qur'an & Modern Science: Compatible or Incompatible?".
On the issue of the theory of evolution, Naik commented that it contradicts Islam since it remains "just a theory and not a fact". According to Naik, scientists "support the theory, because it went against the Bible – not because it was true." According to Naik, there are hundreds of scientists and Noble Prize winners who speak against Darwin’s theory. Political Analyst Khaled Ahmed argues that, Naik, through his claims of Islam's superiority over other religious faiths, practices, what he calls reverse Orientalism. In 2004, Naik visited New Zealand and then the Australian capital at the invitation of Islamic Information and Services Network of Australasia. At his conference in Melbourne, senior writer and columnist Sushi Das commented that "Naik extolled the moral and spiritual superiority of Islam and lampooned other faiths and the West in general", further criticizing that Naik's words "fostered a spirit of separateness and reinforced prejudice". In August 2006, Naik's visit and conference in Cardiff (UK) were the object of controversy, when Welsh MP David Davies called for his appearance to be cancelled. He argued that Naik as a 'hate-monger', and said his views did not deserve a 'public platform'; Muslims from Cardiff, however, defended Naik's right to speak in their city. Saleem Kidwai, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Wales, disagreed with Davies, stating that "people who know about him (Naik) know that he is one of the most uncontroversial persons you could find. He talks about the similarities between religions, and how should we work on the common ground between them", whilst also inviting Davies to discuss further with Naik personally in the conference. The conference went ahead, after the Cardiff council stated it was satisfied that he would not be preaching extremist views. Khushwant Singh, a prominent Indian journalist, politician and author argues that Naik's pronouncements are "juvenile" and said that "they seldom rise above the level of undergraduate college debates, where contestants vie with each other to score brownie points". Singh replied to Zakir Naik's statement that "Western society claims to have uplifted women. On the contrary, it has actually degraded them to the status of concubines, mistresses, and society butterflies who are mere tools in the hands of pleasure seekers and sex marketers…." by saying "Dr. Naik, you know next to nothing about the Western society and are talking through your skull cap. People like you are making the Muslims lag behind other communities." Singh also noted that Naik's audiences "... listen to him with rapt attention and often explode in enthusiastic applause when he rubbishes other religious texts ..." Lucknow based cleric Kalbe Jawad argued that "Naik is bringing a bad name to Muslims. Such people should be condemned and socially boycotted" and claimed that Naik was being financed by the Wahabi sect that supposedly perpetrates violence in the name of Islam and expressed the need for an inquiry into, how Naik was running a TV channel on his own and where he received the funds from. Another Lucknow cleric Naib Imam Maulana Khalid Rasheed Firangi Mahali claimed that Naik has "mugged up some verses from the Koran and pretends to be an Islamic scholar".
In August 2008, Darul Uloom Deoband issued a fatwa stating: "The statements made by Dr Zakir Naik indicate that he is a preacher of Ghair Muqallidin. One should not rely upon his speeches."  The Shariah Board of America has also issued more than 20 fatwas against Naik on their website. They believe Naik has gone astray, as he is not a scholar and issues Islamic teachings without authority or any knowledge to do so, which is dangerous to Islam; "Naik is known for discussions on comparative religions. He is not a qualified Aalim of deen. His comments on fiqh have no merit. If it is true that he condemned the fiqh of the Imams, then that in itself is a clear indication of his lack of fiqh and understanding of Shairah. We have come across a fatwa from Darul Ifta Jamia Binnoria, Pakistan regarding Zakir Naik not being a certified Aalim of Deen. He should consult with Ulama in his endeavor of propagating deen." In November 2008 the Lucknow based cleric Abul Irfan Mian Firangi Mahali issued a fatwa against Naik, describing Naik as a "Kafir" (non-believer) and stating in the fatwa, that Naik should be ex-communicated from Islam. He argued that "Naik is not an Islamic scholar. His teachings are against the Koran. In his speeches, he insults Allah and glorifies Yazeed, the killer of Imam Hussain" and that Naik had supported Laden and called upon all Muslims to become terrorists. Naik, however, said that his speeches were misquoted and that he was allegedly targeted by people with vested interests and said of the fatwa "fatwas mean nothing. They should also issue fatwas against Imam Bukhari. Some clerics who have limited understanding of Islam are doing these things. It doesn't affect me". The All-India Sunni Board and Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani Foundation have also defended Naik.
1. ^ a b Islamic Research Foundation - Bio Data 2. ^ a b "Second opinion: Zakir Naik’s ‘reverse orientalism’ —Khaled Ahmed’s TV Review". Daily Times. 16 December 2003. http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=story_16-122003_pg3_4. Retrieved 20 May 2007. 3. ^ a b Mazumdar, Sudip (23 January 2006). "Beaming In Salvation". Newsweek International. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10854375/site/newsweek/. [dead link] 4. ^ "Zakir Naik". Tungekar.com. http://www.tungekar.com/zakirnaik.html. Retrieved 30 August 2009. 5. ^ Spreading God’s Word Is His Mission – Arab News 6. ^ Muslims Mourn Ahmed Deedat, IslamOnline.net, August 8, 2005 7. ^ a b c Hansen, Thomas (2001). Wages of Violence: Naming and Identity in Postcolonial Bombay. Princeton University Press. p. 177. ISBN 0-691-08840-3. 8. ^ Media Urged to Counter Anti-Muslim Bias – Arab news, Sunday October 9, 2005 9. ^ Ten Most Common Questions asked by Christian Missionaries against Islam[dead link] by Naik on IRF.net 10.^ Books Authored by Zakir Naik[dead link] 11.^ FAQs on Islam by Dr. Zakir Naik 12.^ Prohibition of Alcohol in Islam – Islamic Voice 13.^ Was Islam Spread by the Sword? – by Dr. Zakir Naik 14.^ Are Ram And Krishna Prophets Of God? – Islamic Voice
15.^ Syed Neaz Ahmad (23 February 2007). "Peace TV Reaching 50 Million Viewers – Zakir Naik". Saudi Gazette. Archived from the original on 2007-07-07. http://web.archive.org/web/20070707211833/http://www.saudigazette.com.sa/index.php? option=com_content&task=view&id=25960&Itemid=146. Retrieved 18 May 2007. 16.^ Khaled Ahmed (2006-01-08) WORD FOR WORD: William Campbell versus Zakir Naik Daily Times. Retrieved on 2009-07-30. 17.^ New Muslims on the rise in US after Sept. 11 [dead link] 18.^ Time Magazine, Islam, Orientalism And the West; Monday, Apr. 16, 1979 19.^ "Islam's gender debate at the fore". Theage.com.au. http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/08/29/1093717837783.html. Retrieved 30 August 2009. 20.^ "The clash of ignorance". Theage.com.au. 6 http://www.theage.com.au/news/opinion/the-clash-ofignorance/2005/08/06/1123125843879.html. Retrieved 30 August 2009. 21.^ Religious dialogue for Spiritual Enlightenment Retrieved on 2009-07-20. 22.^ Dr Zakir Naik invites Pope Benedict XVI for open interfaith dialogue – Pak Tribune, September 29, 2006 23.^ Pope Benedict’s Provocative Utterances op ed by Latheef Farook, South Asia News Agency, October 18, 2006 24.^ Naik:9/11 an insiders job 25.^ Naik:9/11 an insiders job (transcript) 26.^ Rising Kashmir, Daily Newspaper, Srinagar Jammu and Kashmir - The problem of being Naik by Dr Javaid Iqbal Bhat 27.^ Justice, peace & unity: The cornerstone of Islam by Syed Neaz Ahmad, Saudi Gazette, 28.^ Shahid Raza Burney (2007-12-31) Zakir Naik’s Remarks on Yazid Spark Anger Among Muslims Arab News. Retrieved on 2009-07-30. 29.^ Row_over_Islamic_preachers_remarks by Mohammed Wajihuddin, Times of India 30.^ Zakir Naik’s Remarks on Yazid Spark Anger Among Muslims by Shahid Raza Burney, Arab News 31.^ Site of the Peace Conferences 32.^ Quran and Modern Science – Conflict or Conciliation? – Part Two – by Dr. Zakir Naik 33.^ "Scholar clears the air about Islam ‘labels’" (PDF). Te Waha Nui. 6 September 2004. http://www.tewahanui.info/pdfs/4/twn04pg04.pdf. Retrieved 20 May 2007. 34.^ The Age, Sushi Das Profile 35.^ "Between two worlds". The Age. 28 July 2005. http://www.theage.com.au/news/sushidas/between-two-worlds/2005/07/27/1122143904716.html. Retrieved 20 May 2007. 36.^ Row over Islamic preacher – WalesOnline.co.uk 37.^ Katie Bodinger (21 August 2006). "Cleric's address hailed a success". Icwales.icnetwork.co.uk. http://icwales.icnetwork.co.uk/0100news/0200wales/tm_objectid=17598165%26method=full %26siteid=50082-name_page.html. Retrieved 30 August 2009. 38.^ Questions Commonly Asked by Non-Muslims -III : Hijab for Women by Dr. Zakir Naik 39.^ One man’s belief is another’s shackle by Khuswant Singh, August 2005.
40.^ Why Muslims lag behind by Khuswant Singh, 41.^ a b Storm over fatwa against scholar Zakir Naik 42.^ Fatwa: 1541 43.^ Shariah Board of America – Q&A 44.^ Untitled Page 45.^ Why do Muslims hate Dr Zakir Naik?
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Islamic Research Foundation (official website) Peace TV (official website) Here’s Zakir Naik, ‘Fundamentalist, not Fanatic’ Mumbai Newsline Second opinion: Zakir Naik’s ‘reverse orientalism’ —Khaled Ahmed’s TV Review
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