Source Cited Before Karnataka HC To Argue Essentiality Of Hijab Calls For Violence Against Disbelievers, Idol Worshipers And Women
During the hearing before the Karnataka High Court, Senior Advocate Devadatt Kamat told the Bench that Quran.com is an authentic source of the Holy Quran while citing verses of the book to argue that wearing hijab is an essential religious practice to be protected under Article 25 of the Constitution.
Kamat was appearing for two students who filed a writ petition challenging their College's decision not to permit them to wear hijab inside classrooms.
Kamat also told the Court that Abdul Haleem's translation of the Holy Quran can be treated as authentic.
Kamat read verses 24.31 and 24.33 to the Court to contend that since the requirement of the veil is mentioned in those verses, hijab is to be treated as an essential religious practice in Islam.
As far as veils are concerned, the translation by Abdul Haleem of verse 24.31 says, "...they should let their headscarves fall to cover their necklines and not reveal their charms except to their husbands, their fathers....". The translation of Yusuf Ali, also available on the same website, says, "...they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands, their fathers...".
The same verse 24.31 also says, women should "lower their glances" in the presence of men, and should not "stamp their feet so as to draw attention to any hidden charms".
It is not clear why Devadatt Kamat referred to verse 24.33 (as reported in multiple legal news portals). Verse 24.33 talks about not forcing slave girls into prostitution.
Abdul Haleem's translation of the Holy Quran on the same website also provides the following:-
1. Kill Idolaters
Translation of verse 9.5 by Abdul Haleem, available on Quran.com is as follows:-
"When the [four] forbidden months are over, wherever you encounter the idolaters, kill them, seize them, besiege them, wait for them at every lookout post; but if they turn [to God], maintain the prayer, and pay the prescribed alms, let them go on their way, for God is most forgiving and merciful." (emphasis added throughout)
The translation by Yusuf Ali of the same verse uses the word "beleaguer" and not "kill".
2. Fight People of the Book until they pay Jizya
Translation of verse 9.29 by Abdul Haleem, available on Quran.com is as follows:-
"Fight those of the People of the Book who do not [truly] believe in God and the Last Day, who do not forbid what God and His Messenger have forbidden, who do not obey the rule of justice, until they pay the tax and agree to submit."
"People of the Book" is a reference to Jews, Christians, and Sabians.
Jizya is a tax levied on 'dhimmis' or non-muslims living in an Islamic state.
3. Fight the Disbelievers
Translation of verse 9.123 by Abdul Haleem, available on Quran.com is as follows:-
"You who believe, fight the disbelievers near you and let them find you standing firm: be aware that God is with those who are mindful of Him."
4. Strike Disbelievers in the neck in battle
Translation of verse 47.4 by Abdul Haleem, available on Quran.com is as follows:-
"When you meet the disbelievers in battle, strike them in the neck, and once they are defeated, bind any captives firmly––later you can release them by grace or by ransom––until the toils of war have ended. That [is the way]. God could have defeated them Himself if He had willed, but His purpose is to test some of you by means of others. He will not let the deeds of those who are killed for His cause come to nothing."
5. Be harsh towards the Disbelievers
Translation of verse 48.29 by Abdul Haleem, available on Quran.com is as follows:-
"Muhammad is the Messenger of God. Those who follow him are harsh towards the disbelievers and compassionate towards each other. You see them kneeling and prostrating, seeking God's bounty and His good pleasure: on their faces they bear the marks of their prostrations. This is how they are pictured in the Torah and the Gospel: like a seed that puts forth its shoot, becomes strong, grows thick, and rises on its stem to the delight of its sowers. So God infuriates the disbelievers through them; God promises forgiveness and a great reward to those who believe and do righteous deeds."
6. Hit your wives
Translation of verse 4.34 by Abdul Haleem, available on Quran.com is as follows:-
"Husbands should take good care of their wives, with [the bounties] God has given to some more than others and with what they spend out of their own money. Righteous wives are devout and guard what God would have them guard in their husbands' absence. If you fear high-handedness from your wives, remind them [of the teachings of God], then ignore them when you go to bed, then hit them. If they obey you, you have no right to act against them: God is most high and great."
7. Keep women who do a lewd act at home till death
Translation of verse 4.15 by Abdul Haleem, available on Quran.com is as follows:-
"If any of your women commit a lewd act, call four witnesses from among you, then, if they testify to their guilt, keep the women at home until death comes to them or until God shows them another way."
These are a few of the verses from the source that was relied upon before the Karnataka High Court, which contain injunctions incompatible with modern-day social norms in general and the Constitution of India in particular.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author. Verdictum does not assume any responsibility or liability for the contents of the article.