Televangelist Zakir Naik’s NGO Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) was among the nearly 150 NGOs against whom adverse reports had been issued by the security agencies in July, The Hindu has reported.
On Thursday, the Union Home Ministry suspended four officials for alleged irregularities in renewing the registration Naik’s NGO, Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA)
A top government official told The Hindu that despite the IRF featuring on the list, its Foreign Contributions Regulation Act (FCRA) licence was renewed on August 19 automatically through the online system. A FCRA licence is a mandatory requirement for an NGO to receive foreign funds; the licence is renewed every five years. An official explained that though the renewal system had been automated, the administrators were clearly told that in case of a pending inquiry and an adverse intelligence input, the licence should not be renewed.
The official said that in 2013, the Home Ministry was asked by the PMO to look into the IRF’s foreign funding pattern and it was only in April 2014 that a team of Home Ministry officials went to the IRF’s Mumbai office to inspect its accounts.
Naik was accused of influencing the militants who carried out the Dhaka terror attack at a restaurant killing 20 people.