Analysis, Featured, South Asia

Expecting Justice from the Unjust

An accountability court has handed ousted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif seven years in jail in the Al-Azizia Steel Mills corruption reference, and acquitted him in the Flagship Investments reference. (Source: Dawn)


The judgement brought multiple reactions from people, which depended on one’s view of how reliable National Accountability Bureau (NAB) is. Some are taking it as a surgical removal of Nawaz Sharif from the political scene while others dream of seeing all looters being brought to justice. NAB, which was established in 1999, has been recognized as more a symbol of fear than of justice. If a matter goes to NAB, it should be considered forgone that it will announce that the matter is dubious but it will fail to resolve the issue. There are inquiries with the bureau that have been pending for years. This delay creates a lot of suspicion. The recent incident of a professor’s death in handcuffs, while in NAB custody, has sent shock waves throughout the Nation. The man who was in custody since last two months died waiting for justice and in desperate need of medical help. The handcuffed dead body of this teacher who failed to get justice is a blow to our conscience, and the shadow of crime done or undone will remain with the family forever.

Nawaz Sharif first became the Prime Minister of Pakistan in 1990 and since then has been in office thrice. The law applied in Pakistan gives a chance to Nawaz Sharif to appeal against its latest conviction. Nawaz Sharif, whose sons are abroad (with the probability of never coming back), will not only go through a difficult time but his political party will suffer as well. If we have a look at the situation closely, we will see the non-transparency of the justice system. As we will witness the defaming and media trial of the famous convicts, we will never see the stolen national assets retrieved, neither will we ever see them being tried or punished for selling the dignity and honour of their people. It is just as if a failed monarch is being dethroned and the crown is being prepared for the next, and for that, the whole machinery becomes active.

Islam, on the other hand, has a very well-defined justice and accountability system. It is complete and ready for application and leaves no room for experimentation and innovation to gain personal benefit. Institutions like NAB can never bring justice to the criminals like Nawaz and Asif Ali Zardari. Their biggest crime is undermining the laws of Allah (swt) and their punishment must come from His law. Under the Shariah Law, the Mahkamat ul Madhalim identifies corruption and is headed by a judge who has the relevant judicial powers to remove and try all unjust acts committed by any official, including the head of Government. Justice is not a form of revenge but it is a way of bringing equality while managing the affairs of the people. This not only brings equality to the society but also increases the trust of people in each other and on the State.

إَنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْمُرُكُمْ أَن تُؤَدُّوا الْأَمَانَاتِ إِلَىٰ أَهْلِهَا وَإِذَا حَكَمْتُم بَيْنَ النَّاسِ أَن تَحْكُمُوا بِالْعَدْلِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ نِعِمَّا يَعِظُكُم بِهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ سَمِيعًا بَصِيرًا

“Verily, Allah commands you to render trusts to whom they are due and when you judge between people to judge with justice. Excellent is that which Allah instructs you. Verily, Allah is ever Hearing and Seeing.”

[Surah An-Nisa 4:58]


Ikhlaq Jehan