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  Metros   Mumbai  21 Nov 2016  NIA startled by 61 cameras in Peace TV office

NIA startled by 61 cameras in Peace TV office

THE ASIAN AGE. | NIVEDITA NIRANJANKUMAR
Published : Nov 21, 2016, 5:14 am IST
Updated : Nov 21, 2016, 6:55 am IST

The recovered documents relate to various activities including financial transactions and property details of Zakir Naik and IRF.

National Investigation Agency team and Mumbai Police raids the Islamic Research Foundation office headed by Zakir Naik at Dongri in Mumbai. (Photo: PTI)
 National Investigation Agency team and Mumbai Police raids the Islamic Research Foundation office headed by Zakir Naik at Dongri in Mumbai. (Photo: PTI)

Mumbai: Controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik seems to have trusted no one, as he had installed 61 cameras in an office as big as a 2BHK apartment, which was converted into an editing studio owned by Harmony Media Pvt. Ltd. The studio was where the programmes that aired on Peace TV, including Naik’s speeches, were edited and sent to various countries to be aired on the channel. According to two employees that The Asian Age spoke to, the office is under constant surveillance.

“We have a total of 61 editors in the office who work in shifts so there is someone in the office 24x7. All the editing bays which have at least two systems each are monitored by a CCTV camera,” said an employee who did not want to be named. He said that the National Investigation Agency (NIA) officials who raided the office on Saturday questioned them about the number of cameras in the office.

 

The Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) in a statement issued last night said, “NIA teams searched simultaneously and seized incriminating documents/files, electronic storage devices and about Rs 12 lakh in cash. The recovered documents relate to various activities including financial transactions and property details of Zakir Naik and IRF.  To assist the search teams, a team of IT experts has been flown from NIA headquarters in Delhi to Mumbai.  The searches are still going on and are likely to continue till late in the night.”

“They asked me about why the office had so many cameras and where all the footage was stored. I told them that they were stored in hard disks of 1 TB,” said an employee who handled the CCTV cameras in the office. He added that the officials were surprised that the footage was stored only for 15 days. “We erase all the data captured by the CCTVs every fortnight, which is replaced by new data,” he said.

 

Another employee who headed the IT department said that the officials asked them about all the storage devices. “They were examining the hard disks and have even seized some of them,” the employee said.

Meanwhile, on Sunday, the NIA officials continued their search of the offices of IRF owned by Naik. The NIA had on Saturday raided 12 properties owned by IRF including its headquarters and the residences of Naik and his brother.

Following an order passed by the Home Ministry terming the IRF as unlawful under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and section 153 -A of the Indian Penal Code, the NIA had registered an FIR against Naik and associates under the same acts. A team of the agency reached the IRF headquarters on Saturday morning and seized the place and eight others were delegated to other offices to conduct searches like in the Women’s Wing, Islamic International Books, Harmony Media Pvt. Ltd, editing studios owned by the IRF, Dr Naik’s house and his brother Mohammed’s house.

 

Tags: zakir naik, peace tv, national investigation agency, islamic research foundation
Location: India, Maharashtra, Mumbai (Bombay)