Understanding the Qualification of Qazi Islamic Judge

Different meanings and qualifications of Qazi the Islamic Judge are enumerated by the four schools of thought of Islam. Before embarking on the qualification it is necessary to ascertain the meaning of Qazi. In the past, Qazi was appointed by the sultan (Head of the State).

The Sultan had also the power to determine the qualification of qazi Islamic judge. But as we know that the status of the sultan has been abolished, now these qazis are appointed by the head of the state e.g. the president. Qazi courts had different classes the jurisdiction of the Qazi court was also bestowed on these court by the sultan.

Meaning of Qazi The Islamic Judge

The word Qazi is derived from ‘Qaza’ and its meaning is different in a literal sense. For example, sometimes it is used as a creation or to complete a task or doing something or resolving disputes or delegating some power or paying debts or performing with delay.

But in Islamic Jurisprudence the word qazi has been assigned different technical meanings given by our jurist.

According to Imam Abu Hanifa (Hanafi Sect)

Qazi is a person who decide disputes and resolve the conflict of people. But this definition is very wide because any third person who resolves the disputes can be termed as Qazi Islamic judge, but he is still not Qazi in a technical sense because one has to acquire some qualification to act as a Qazi.

According to Imam Shafi‘i (Shafi‘i Sect)

“The decision on disputes between two or more persons with the commandments of Allah”.

According to Imam Malki (Maliki Sect)

“The pronouncement of the rules of Shariah in a binding manner”.

In Fatwa Alamgirya

It is defined as “a binding order given by the public authorities”.

Common Features of Definition

  • Binding in nature
  • Sources are Islamic
  • The person must be legally competent

Now I come towards the qualification of Qazi the Islamic judges, here now again Islamic jurists have given different qualifications. There are as under:

MALIKI’s View on Qualification of Qazi Islamic Judge

According to this school of thought

  1. He should be Adil (Just), a person of high character for this there are some conditions:
  2. He should be Muslim
  3. He should be adult
  4. He should be a free person and not a slave.
  5. He should be sane
  6. He should be pious( Mutaki)
  7. He should be male
  8. He must have a proper understanding of Islamic law
  9. He should be physically sound

SHAFI’s View on Qualification of Qazi Islamic Judge

According to this school of thought

  1. He should be a Muslim
  2. He should be a Mukalaf(who is subject to Islamic obligation)
  3. He should be a free person, not a slave
  4. He should be a male
  5. He should be physically sound
  6. He should be Mujtahid
  7. Capable of administrative justice

HANABli’s View on Qualification of Qazi Islamic Judge

The states that

  1. He should be perfectly qualified mean he should be physically perfect, adult, male, free person, sane
  2. He should be Mujtahid
  3. He should be an (Adil) just person

ABU HANIFA’s View on Qualification of Qazi Islamic Judge

He gives the following conditions

  1. Must be Muslim
  2. Must be adult
  3. Must be free
  4. Must be physically perfect
  5. Must be saneMust be Adil (just)
  6. He is being authorized by the government

According to the majority of jurist non-Muslim cannot become Qazi because in the Quran it is stated that”Allah has not given them authority over Muslim”. But Abu Hanifa says that non-Muslim can be appointed over non-Muslims to settle the disputes according to their religion.

Women As a Qazi

The majority of the jurists say that women cannot become Qazi in a Muslim state. In a Hadith it is narrated “a nation cannot succeed if they delegate their power to women”. But Hanafi says that except criminal and Hadood cases, women can be appointed as a Qazi.

Condition of Mujtahid

The majority says that it is a very important condition and a Qazi must be a mujtahid. But Hanafi says it is not binding or necessary but it is preferable if a Qazi is a mujtahid

General conditions

  1. Should not be a moody
  2. He should be a Scholar
  3. He should be harsh in his attitude
  4. He should not help the tyrants

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