AIMPLB, UP Shia Waqf Board lock horns over Shariat court proposal

Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh)/Chennai (Tamil Nadu) [India]: The All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) and the Uttar Pradesh Shia Waqf Board are at loggerheads over the former’s proposal to establish Shariat courts in all districts across the country.

While the AIMPLB has claimed that the practice began in 1993, the Shia Waqf Board has branded the proposal to be unconstitutional and equivalent to betraying the nation.

Speaking to ANI on Sunday, AIMPLB’s Zafaryab Jilani said the Supreme Court had observed that the Shariat courts would not be seen as parallel courts.

“We don’t call it Shariat court. It’s Darul Qaza, where Qazi solves matrimonial disputes or suggests ways for separations if issues aren’t solved. This will only help people, especially women, to seek justice. We discuss this in all our meetings, and will once again take it up in our next meeting on July 15. The Muslim Personal Law Board started it (Darul Qaza) in India in 1993. This is nothing new,” he said.

On the other hand, UP Shia Waqf Board’s Wasim Rizvi claimed that the establishment of such institutions would lead to creation of a “Kashmir-like situation in the whole country”.

“We have a Constitution in place and a functioning law and order. The country follows the Constitution, not a Shariat court. AIMPLB is trying to ruin the harmony in India by creating a Kashmir-like situation everywhere. If this is implemented, we want the AIMPLB to be banned and strict action to be taken,” he said.

The AIMPLB had proposed to set up Shariat courts in all districts in the country to resolve all issues within the Islamic law, instead of approaching other courts.

However, Union Minister of State for Law and Justice, PP Chaudhary, argued that the establishment of any court would have to be sanctioned by law.

“As far as opening of a court is concerned, it can only be in accordance with the law. It (opening of any court) should be competent under the law. Otherwise, any verdict given by such courts is against the Constitution, and therefore, is not enforceable,” he said. (ANI)