Thursday, August 11, 2022

Conflicting Perspectives on Blasphemy and the Practice of Taking the Law into One's Own Hands, Which Is Illegal and Punishable Under Islamic Sharia – Part 1

By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi, New Age Islam 11 August 2022 Taking the Law into Hands Is a Criminal and Punishable Act in Islamic Sharia Main Points: 1. Instead of being useful and offering solutions to the problems, a number of articles are merely contributing to confuse and frighten the public. 2. No average Muslim has the power to impose punishment on others, regardless of whether it is sanctioned by the Quran or a Hadith. Only an Islamic court or the Sultan of Islam has this power. 3. Some folks don't even think twice before charging that tragedies like the murder of Kanhaiyalal continue to occur because this Hadith is taught in madrasas. 4. Madrasas do not teach this Hadith as part of their curriculum, but those affiliated with mosques and madrasas should have responded to this accusation on social media. 5. Any issue deserves an effective reaction, and any ineffective effort to solve the issue is just a waste of time and energy. ------ Following the murder of Kanhaiya Lal, dozens of Indian Islamic scholars released condemnatory statements, all of which shared the same tenet that no one has the authority to take the law into their hands in Islamic Sharia. The Indian Islamic clerics who were featured in the report of the condemnation statements published on the website did not examine the reliability and weakness of the chain of narration of the Hadith or whether it could or could not be used as evidence in the blasphemy case. However, all the Islamic scholars concurred that taking the law into one's hands is criminal and punishable under Islamic Sharia. ------ The Brutal Killing Of A Hindu In The Name Of Blasphemy In Udaipur Rajasthan Is Extremely Shameful, Reprehensible And Anti-Islamic: Muslim Organizations, Ulama And Personalities ----- In my view the most effective fatwa in this regard is the one that was issued by Mufti Saleem Noori from the Dargah Aala Hazrat in Bareilly Sharif. Citing the edict of Aala Hazrat Imam Ahmad Raza, this fatwa explicitly states that only the Islamic court and the Sultan of Islam have the power to punish blasphemers. Therefore, in the perspective of Islamic Sharia, anyone who takes the law into his own hands and punishes the offenders himself is not only a murderer but also deserving of punishment. This fatwa will surely be useful and beneficial to those who follow Aala Hazrat in putting an end to any radicalism connected to blasphemy. ------ Fatwa Of Aala Hazrat In The Context Of The Udaipur Incident: Anyone Who Takes The Law Into One’s Hands By Killing For Blasphemy In A Muslim Or Non-Muslim Country Would Be Punished According To Islamic Sharia ------- Some authors and speakers continue to provide the present-day heedless commoners with an incorrect evaluation of the authenticity and weaknesses of the Sanad (chain of narration) of the pertinent Hadith. It would be good if they instead informed the common people through gatherings, conferences, and Friday sermons that any Islamic punishment, regardless of whether it is supported by the Holy Quran, Hadith (Sunnah), Ijmaa, or Qiyas, can only be enacted by the Islamic Court or the Sultan of Islam and that neither of these entities exists in our country. In this situation, we are compelled to use one of the two alternative channels to address our issues: either we file complaints with the Indian court, or else we must be patient and surrender our problems and matters to our rightful owner, Allah Almighty. No Indian, Muslim or not, has the right to take the law into their own hands and judge for themselves, even if there is a delay in their complaint being registered or in receiving justice. This is because anyone who takes the law into their own hands is guilty and subject to punishment in the eyes of the Indian court. If our imams, scholars, and people who write, read, and comment on social media—regardless of their affiliation with any community, madrasas and religious institutions, modern educational institutions, colleges, and universities, or whether they are simply educated gentlemen—helped to publicise such basic truths, the problem under discussion or the troublesome issue of enforcing any Islamic criminal laws would be largely or completely resolved. However, instead of generalizing such clear-cut ideas and proposing solutions to problems, some people prefer to spread more confusion due to their lack of knowledge. Ever since the tragic murder of Kanhaiyalal, several articles, particularly those written in English, have been published that, rather than being effective and providing solutions to the issues, are only serving to confuse and worry the public. One of the key reasons for this is the varying opinions on the reliability and chain of narration of this Hadith. Some claim that though the Hadith that mandates the death penalty for blasphemers is weak and unreliable, it is still admissible because it is backed by further evidence, hence it must be implemented in the blasphemy law. They contend that when a weak Hadith is supported by greater evidence, it becomes authentic and acceptable in action-related topics. Others disagree, arguing that this Hadith is still weak and cannot be relied upon to guide action-related matters or blasphemy law. Some writings even go so far as to assert that this Hadith is fabricated. In other words, rather than offering any solutions to the associated problems, these writers have just served to add to the perplexity of common people through their conflicting writings. Notwithstanding the possibility that they did not intend to write such things with the unwelcome aim, it is necessary to make it clear that they are perplexed and unable to come up with a solution to the Blasphemy-related worry. Some men don't even hesitate to accuse that because this Hadith is taught in madrasas, tragedies like the murder of Kanhaiyalal keep happening. Despite the fact that madrasas do not teach this Hadith as a part of their curriculum, those affiliated with mosques and madrasas should have responded to this accusation publicly and honestly on social media. They should have emphasised that even if a punishment is sanctioned by the Quran or a Hadith, only an Islamic court or Sultan of Islam has the authority to impose that punishment and that no common Muslim possesses that authority, as was made clear in the fatwa issued from Bareilly. But how can one expect such a straightforward idea to be preached and spread by those who focus on obscuring the issues rather than offering a solution? Any issue deserves an effective reaction, and any ineffective effort to solve the issue is just a waste of time and energy. Those who devote all of their time and energy to the authenticity, weakness, admissibility or inadmissibility of the Blasphemy-related hadith cannot dispute that the Holy Quran makes it abundantly clear that adultery is punishable by a hundred lashes and theft by the amputation of hands. The Holy Quran, not any weak or authentic Hadith, is what validates the punishment for adultery or theft. Can these people then assert that the common Muslims have the authority to take the law into their hands and punish offenders like adulterers and thieves? I'm sure they won't ever be able to assert that. In this regard, they will have to cite Islamic jurisprudential principles as well as the opinions of the jurists and their forebears, whose teachings are also imparted to the students of Islamic madrasas. These principles state that regardless of whether a punishment is authorised by the Quran or a Hadith, only an Islamic court or the Sultan of Islam has the authority to impose it, and that no ordinary Muslim has the authority to take the law into his hands. I don't want to contrast Indian law with Islamic law. However, I'll use our country, as an illustration, to demonstrate that our country too has a death sentence law, even though it only applies to the rarest of rare offences. However, only our Indian courts have the power to sentence criminals to prison or death. No common Indian person has the authority to impose punishment on criminals by taking the law into his hands. Any Indian who takes the law into his hands will be considered guilty and punishable. At this point, no one asserts that the murderer took the law into his own hands to punish criminals because Indian law already stipulated such a punishment. Even though Indian law clearly states that some offences are punishable by death, legal experts, at that time, only take into account the fact that only Indian courts, not common people, have the authority to apply the punishments. How simple it is, and practically every Indian citizen is aware of this. In a similar vein, it is crucial for every Muslim to first comprehend and then convey to others that no ordinary Muslim is permitted to impose punishment on others; rather, anyone who does so will be deemed to have violated the law and will be subject to punishment under Islamic Sharia, regardless of whether the punishment was mandated by the Quran or a Hadith. It's crucial to emphasise to them that Indian law, not Islamic law, governs our nation of India, which is something that every Indian must respect. The aforementioned notion is relatively simple to comprehend and convey to the average person. However, if you present incomplete research about any Hadith, its principles, its narration and its application in front of the common folks, they would get perplexed. Even if you present them with academic interpretations or complete research about that Hadith, they will not be able to understand them since the science or understanding of the Hadith is not something that the general public or non-experts can easily understand or explain. For the science of Hadith or the jurisprudence of Hadith, the pious predecessors (Salaf-e-Saliheen) have laid down certain principles which have been in practice since the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him). If one does not grasp and embrace these principles, one runs the risk of misinterpreting the Hadith. Among the arts and principles that must be understood for the comprehension of hadiths are the knowledge of the Quran (ilm al-Quran), the knowledge of hadith (ilm al-Hadith), the knowledge of jurisprudence (ilm al-Fiqh), the Principles of Exegesis (usul al-Tafsir), the knowledge of hadith-narration (ilm riwayat al-hadith), the Knowledge of Dirāyat al-ḥadīth (lit. comprehension of hadith), the science of rijal (a branch of hadith sciences that examines the characteristics of hadith transmitters, particularly their trustworthiness in hadith transmission, as well as the associated standards and rules), the science of Al-Jarḥ wa l-taʿdīl (a subfield of hadith sciences that assesses the trustworthiness and unreliability of hadith transmitters and determines whether to accept or reject certain hadiths as authentic or unreliable) etc. However, if one is untrained in these fields and relies entirely on the literal meaning of any hadith, one will interpret many hadiths incorrectly. Let the hadith specialists and experts handle it; this is their area of expertise. The general public and experts from other fields are therefore recommended to study the subject at hand rather than getting sucked by their hypotheses and allegations in this domain; which have been highlighted and repeated throughout the aforementioned lines. As mentioned above, only the Islamic court and the Sultan of Islam have the power to impose Islamic punishments. No ordinary Muslim is permitted to take the law into his own hands and neither Islamic law nor the right to impose Islamic punishments is recognised by our country. Above all, Islamic Sharia declares that anyone who takes the laws into his or her hands is a criminal and punishable under law. ------ A regular Columnist with, Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi Dehlvi is a Classical Islamic scholar with a Sufi background and English-Arabic-Urdu Translator. Urdu Article: Conflicting Perspectives on Blasphemy and the Practise of Taking the Law into One's Own Hands, Which Is Illegal and Punishable Under Islamic Sharia – Part 1 گستاخ رسول کی سزا کے متعلق متضاد تحریریں اور قانون ہاتھ میں لینے کا عمل جو کہ اسلامی شریعت میں جرم ہے URL: New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

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