PM Modi brings up Zakir Naik's extradition in meet with Malaysian counterpart
Naik, who is a fugitive in India, was granted permanent residency in Malaysia by the previous government
Prime Minister Narendra Modi met his Malaysian counterpart Mahathir Mohamad on Thursday on the sidelines of the 5th East Economic Forum in the Russian city of Vladivostok to discuss issues, including the extradition of controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik. The televangelist is currently residing in Malaysia.
Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale briefed the media after the bilateral meeting between Modi and Mahathir, saying, "Prime Minister Modi raised the issue of Zakir Naik's extradition. Both the parties have decided that our officials will stay in contact regarding the matter and it is an important issue for us."
Naik, who is a fugitive in India, was granted permanent residency in Malaysia by the previous government. He is living in the country for past three years.
He is facing charges of inciting communal disharmony and committing unlawful activities in India. He is also facing probe both in India and Bangladesh in connection with the terror attack at the Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka on July 2016.
India had said it has formally requested Malaysia about the case and will continue to pursue his extradition, ANI reported.
Meanwhile, the two leaders also discussed the aspects of India-Malaysian bilateral relationship and ways to diversify cooperation for the welfare of people in both countries.
Prime Minister Modi was one among the earliest leaders who had called on Mahathir in Kuala Lumpur soon after last year's elections. He also described that the meeting with his Malaysian counterpart as very historic one and India was looking forward to working closely with Malaysia, Gokhale was quoting by ANI saying.
The Malaysian Prime Minister also acknowledged that there was a growing trade between the two countries. In that context, Mahathir also mentioned that Malaysia would also consider importing more from India so that the country's export to Malaysia grows, the foreign secretary told to media persons.
The leaders also discussed the internal matters of the countries. Modi explained to his counterpart, the reason behind the bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir in terms of both giving effective governance and delivering socio-economic justice in the region.
The leaders also focused on terrorism and how to cope with the growing global threat. In the meeting, the Malaysian Prime Minister acknowledged that terrorism was a global problem and unequivocally expressed that Malaysia is against all forms of terrorism, Gokhale added.
With inputs from ANI
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