A group of Malay Muslim NGOs protested after Friday prayers in Penang today against Deputy Chief Minister II P Ramasamy's call for Malaysia to deport fugitive preacher Zakir Naik back to India.
Donning black songkok paired with the Baju Melayu, the group protested outside Masjid Jamek Shaik Eusoff in Datuk Keramat and hurled insults at the Prai assemblyperson while chanting "Tangkap (arrest) Ramasamy".
They urged him to show respect for Islam as the official religion of the federation.
Policemen were in the vicinity to manage traffic and security while ensuring the protest proceeded peacefully.
One of the protesters, Salman Ali from Institut Al Qayyim, urged police to probe Ramasamy, saying the group would submit memoranda to Yang di-Pertua Negeri Abdul Rahman Abbas and to the state government tomorrow.
"Zakir did no wrong. Ramasamy should stop harping on the preacher. Ramasamy is only a DCM and not a cabinet minister," Salman said.
At a press conference earlier today, Ramasamy urged the police to investigate groups that falsely accused him of having links to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), a pro-Tamil militant group noted for its 25-year insurgency against the Sri Lankan government.
"These people should be investigated for criminal intimidation under the Penal Code," said Ramasamy of the local groups which he said had slandered him.
He also defended his criticisms against Zakir, saying the preacher, who was given permanent residence in Malaysia, should be deported as the country must honour its extradition treaty with India.
Zakir is wanted in India to face charges of money laundering, inciting violence and religious tension but the preacher has denied all charges, claiming he is a victim of a conspiracy by the largely Hindu government.