INDIAN SHARIAH COURT RULES IN FAVOR OF HINDU BUSINESSMAN
By Balakrishnan Unny
The Sandi Gazette
WHILE the Supreme Court is hearing a petition questioning the legality of Islamic courts in India, a shariah court in Ahmedabad has helped an unlikely litigant – a Hindu businessman who wasn't being paid by a Muslim customer. Puranbhai Shah, who has a paving stone business on the Sarkhej – Gandhingar highway ,was finding it difficult to recover money from Zariful Hasan, a resident of Dudeshwar to whom he had supplied marble . Hasan had had the marble slabs fixed at a site but was dilly- dallying on payment: he contested the tems of business. " A friend then suggested me to approach the Shariah court and have the problem settled", said shah. " Since I had not filed any court case till then , I agreed and applied for a settlement." Shah, the only Hindu so far to move the Shariah court, filed the application on August 4 . On August 8, in keeping with the settlement reached at the Shariah court , he got a check for Rs30.000 from Hasan – more than what Hasan wanted to pay . and less than whatshah wanted to recover. " I had no problem accepting that a mount as it ensured a full settlement, " Shah said. Said Mufti Abdul Qayyum Jaipuri, who heads the cart: Shah may have decided to go for a settlement because of the small cost of processing the case and considerable reduction in time and effort besides saving on lawyer's fee." He said all people – irrespective of community – are welcome to settle disputes in his court. The court was sell up eight monthst ago by the All India Personal Law Board . Of the 128 cases referred to it' It has settled 46." We have als dismissed six applications as being untenable … so it cannot be said that a settlement is hammered out without caring for merits of case," Said Qayyum . Asked about the current controversy about the legal status of Shariah courts, maulana Ahmed Devlavi. Founder member of AIMPLB, said: It is not correct to paint Shariah courts as parallel courts because they don't rival the regular courts. Like lok Adalats , they only assist the judiciary by mediating between parties. They don't sit in judgrment." He said there was no plan to suspend work in Ahmedabad until a directive was received from the board's central office . " We are well aware of the law of the land on the issue and cannot think of running a paralle court system …. It will be for the board to deal with the Supreme Court notice, " he said . About Union Law Minister H.R. Bhardwaj airing unfavorable opinion on Shariah courts, Devlavi said it was a very serious issue because the present controversy was another attempt to pave the way for a uniform civil code. " We do not pressure anyone in any manner to refer matters to us. There is no question of us hijacking the justice system as being made out in certain quarters, " he said. In Lucknow , the Muslim intelligentsia in Uttar Pradesh appears divided over the recent " fatwa " issued by Islamic seminary Darul Uloom making the wearing of veils mandatory for Muslim women entering politics. While a member of Muslim Personal Law Board memberand Naib Imam of Firangi Mahal , Khalid Rasheed asked the Ulema not interfere in political matters, Another member of the board and senior counsel Zafaryab Jilani said wearing a " naqab" ( veil) should not bell inked only with contesting elections as has been stated by the Islamic seminary. " Such fatwas unnecessarily expose the community to criticiam by communal forces thereby harming the interest of Muslims. " Rasheed said advising the Ulema to confine themselves to shariah matters. Quoting the Quran, Rasheed said Islam preaches equality between men and women and women are in the forefront even in Islamic countries. Jilani , On the other hand, said the views of the Islamic seminsry in this reagard were suggestions coming in response to a specific question and not a fatwa . There is no uniform concept of " naqab " as different people interpret and observe it difterently , Jilani said adding the Darul Uloom edivct has , however , created confusion among Muslims because of its turning as panchayat elections are currently in progress. INDIAN COLLEGE GIRLS tie " rakhi onto the wrists of Indian Securrity Force ( BSF) Jawans at the ladoPakistan border post at wagah during the Hindu festival of " Raksha Bandhau" Friday . The festival celebrates the eternal bonds betweensisters and brothers' Symbolized by the " rachis Which" sisters tie around their brothers wrists – AFP.
The Saudi Gazette . 20/08/2005