Dr Pramod Pathak
The All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) has declared that the board will start setting up Sharia Courts all over the Bharat. This is the most anti-constitutional step the Board has decided to undertake without any consideration for rights of the Muslim citizens of Bharat. A few years ago, Islamic organisations in Kerala had started Sharia Courts, particularly in the Muslim majority districts but they were never given recognition. In due course, they went in obligation, as they were never running in open and the justice delivered by the Qazis and the clerics was not taken seriously. Now that AIMPLB, which claims to represent the Muslim population in Bharat and has flexed muscles to prove its prowess to the ruling Central Government, the move should be examined critically. As such the civil matters for Muslims are even now settled by independent Muslim Personal Law, which more or less runs parallel with the Sharia injunctions. The law of criminal justice, of course, goes by the Constitution, in that case where is the need for running parallel Sharia courts in the country?
Sharia Courts for Whom?
The AIMPLB is typically dominated by Sunni sect followers. In the recent past, the Shia sect members have expressed different opinions on subjects like Ramjanbhumi, Triple Talaq in defiance of the Sunni sect majority and feel discriminated. There are many other theological differences among the Muslims sects and they have not been reconciled. The minor sects like Khojas, Bohoras and others have been at odds with the Sunni majority and feel discriminated. In view of the sectarian divide among the Muslim community, which Sharia code the Sunni dominated AIMPLB is proposing to impose uniformly? Will the judgment delivered by Qazis with sectarian incline be acceptable to all the Muslim population? Will the Pasmandas, Aslats, and Arjals among Muslim accept Sharia imposed by highbrows Ashraf?
Criminal Justice of the Bygone Era
Sharia laws which are based on the Holy Koranic injunctions and supported by the Hadith narrations are strictly enacted in the Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia, UAE, very harshly in Afghanistan and by the terrorists outfits like Al-Qaeda. The justice, there is delivered in open where the criminals are lashed, beheaded, their limbs chopped etc.
Sharai courts in Bharat too will take up the criminal cases and implement the verdict on the lines of the above mentioned Islamic countries. Whom will they employ to carry out these punishments? Will these employees not commit criminal offenses against the victims as such types of gory punishments are not at all constitutionally acceptable by any standards?
With all the legal luminaries in the AIMPLB and associates with the Board, they know very well that this is bound to be opposed at many levels. This move is subtly aimed at imposing a theocracy on the Muslim masses and preparing their mindset for accepting Mullahdom dominance. This off late has been a warning. With forthcoming Lok Sabha elections in view, this is a sinister attempt to inculcate theocratic rule on the Muslim masses by backdoor entry and polarise the gullible voters in favour of political parties who would follow the suit. It also implies large-scale employment generation for Madarsa graduates who know nothing beyond Islamic texts and Arabic language. AIMPLB’s expectations are bound to fall flat, as this move bound to flare up the sectarian divide and harm themselves. This is the right time for the progressive people in the Muslim society to come in open to oppose the Mullahdom who are aptly called bad-tempered religious bigots in other Islamic countries.