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Jamiatul Ulama’s training course on Muslim personal and family laws for lawyers

New Delhi: Jamiatul Ulama-e Hind’s (JUH’s) Law Institute has started a weekly training course on Muslim Pesonal and family laws for lawyers in order to train and familiarise them with Shariat and Muslim personal and family laws, so as to enable them to properly fight and argue in cases pertaining to Islamic Shariat, family and personal laws of Muslims in courts and also to give suitable replies to critics who indulge in criticism and baseless allegation without having any knowledge and understanding about these laws. The necessity of starting such a refresher course for lawyers arose because it has been observed many times that court verdicts in matters pertaining to Muslim personal laws are very often in contradiction with sharaee laws governing personal and family lives and affairs, religious custom and traditions etc., of Muslims. The syllabus of this course are prepared by JUH’s Law Institute. JUH’s general secretary, Maulana Syed Mahmood Madni feels that if lawyers, advocates etc., who handle and aruge cases pertaining to Muslim personal laws are trained in and familiarised with fine and subtle points of sharaee laws, they can handle and present such cases in a better and more convincing manner before the honourable judges. In order to train and familiarise lawyers with Shariat laws a 2-day weekly course on Fridays and Saturdays (evenings) has been arranged for lawyers jurusts, retired judges, ulama, etc.

The inaugural function, chaired by JUH’s President Qari Muhammad Usman Mansoorpuri was held on 4 September in JUH’s central office here in which the important speakers including former chief justice of India, Justice A. M. Ahmadi, Rector of Darul Uloom Deoband Maulana Abul Qasim, Islamic Fiqh Academy’s Maulana Khalid Saifullah Rahmani, UP government's Advocate General Zafaryab Jilani, Prof. Akhtarul Wasey, Anoop George Chandhari, advocate Shakeel Ahmad Sayyad, Jamia Mazahirul Uloom’s Maulana Sayyad Shahid, Faculty of Law, IP University, Delhi’s Dean Prof. Afzal Wani, etc, expressed their views. JUH’s secretary Maulana Niaz Farooqi, advocate said that JUH has been performing the job of leading the Islamic Umma from 1919 and had contributed in the preparation of Muslim Law Shariat Application Act, 1937 and now today again, considers it its duty to provide guidance to the Muslim community in today’s disturbed times is starting this training course for the purpose described above.

Justice A. M. Ahmadi, speaking on this occasion, advised that instead of getting disturbed and agitated against those who, by mischievously raising voice of protest and opposition against bigamy or polygamy with malafide intention and justifying the need of Uniform Civil Code (UCC), we should tell them with a cool mind to first study these documents. He said that the community and nation frequently comes across many problems for which we should try to find solutions. Regarding Art. 44 of the Constitution (which probably deals with uniform civil code) he said that it has been discussed many times but for the past about 70 years the Parliament has not been able to enact a law on UCC. Hence in a society where people of different religions and faiths castes, and sub castes live and who have their own respective personal law, it is a Herculean task to prepare and enforce a uniform civil code applicable to all. Praising Law Institute set up by JUH and the documents of the training course prepared by the Law Institute, he said that this is a good initiative but by becoming angry and agitated, we should not give any chance to those who want to provoke and instigate us to succeed in their evil intentions nor should we waste our time, energy and capabilities.

Maulana Mahmood Madni, general secretary, shedding light on the necessity and advantages of this course, said that this training course contains information about Shariat laws i.e. Nikah, divorce, maintenance allowance (naan wa nafqa), rules of heredity, ownership/sponsorship, will/bequest, auqaf and so on) which has been prepared keeping in mind the needs of lawyers under the conditions prevailing today. He said that this is an effort the benefits of which will be derived by courts, lawyers and those working in this field and misconceptions to a large extent regarding these will be removed. Mufti Abul Qasim said that people in general, particularly non-Muslims generally believe that talaq or divorce means only triple talaq in one sitting whereas these people need to be told that there are three types of talaq i.e. talaq-e rajayee, talaq-e bayan and finally talaq-e moghallaza.

Zafaryab Jilani, advocate, said that there is no law under which personal laws of any religion should be abolished. Hence we should present our case in Supreme Court in a true and correct manner. Defending bigamy or polygamy, he said that as compared to live-in relationship which is spreading like an epidemic these days, Islam’s system of bigamy/polygamy is far better and acceptable. He further said that there is scope in man-made laws to change or to be amended any time and any number of times but Islamic laws can no doubt be explained and elucidated but cannot be amended.

Prof. Akhtarul Wasey of Jamia Millia Islamia, who recently retired from this institution, while praising Jamiatul Ulama’s initiative in starting this training course suggested that if JUH gives this course a legal status and awards diploma in this course, it will be a great and important work. Regarding changes in Shariat laws. He said that when those to whom the Qur’an was revealed had no authority to change zer-o zabar (i.e. even extremely minor changes), who are we to make even slight changes in these laws. 

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 1-15 October 2016 on page no. 15

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