The History of Dar-ul-Qaza in the Ahmadiyya Jamaat

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Tariq Hayat

Pakistan

Dar-ul-Qaza, which started its journey 100 years ago in Qadian, has now been established in almost a dozen countries of the world.  

In his book, Silsila-e-Ahmadiyya, after mentioning the formation of various departments by Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra to generate ease in administrative affairs within the Jamaat in 1919, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad MAra states that Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra also founded a new organisation of arbitration; that is, he founded an independent department to judge between mutual disputes within the Jamaat in which various people were appointed as adjudicators. 

A bench of judges were appointed above these adjudicators to deliver decisions pertaining to appeals and the final and ultimate appeal would be to Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa himself. In these arbitral tribunals, only disputes relating to civilian rights are brought forth, or disputes that are not regarded to be issues that a nation’s law enforcement would be involved in under the law of the respective country.   

The enemies of the Jamaat raised a great hue and cry upon the establishment of Dar-ul-Qaza as if the Jamaat had established a new government within the government and shut the door for people to go to governmental courts.

Through various types of reports, endeavours were made for the government to think ill of the Jamaat. However, those of an understanding nature recognise that this is a profoundly beneficial system, which on one hand violates no law of the state. In fact – as is the purpose of the Panchayati raj (Act) – the government prefers that people decide their affairs amongst themselves. On the other hand, this has emerged as an extremely easy, effective and economical path to resolve internal disputes of members of the Jamaat. 

This department of the Jamaat has two defining features. Firstly, all of the cases in Dar-ul-Qaza are resolved according to the Islamic Shariah. Secondly, no fees are charged from those involved. In fact, every case occurs free of cost and the community bears the expenses as this is the very practise of Islam. 

To stabilise Dar-ul-Qaza on firm foundations after its establishment, in his era of Khilafat, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra listened to disputes in person and penned detailed verdicts, taking out time from his countless engagements. For example, he wrote at one instance alongside his decision, “I have read the record of the case repeatedly and arrived at such a conclusion”. Then, at another instance, he wrote, “I have probed into the record of the case”. 

Where this is evidence of the immense affection and tenderness of heart which a true Khalifa holds for his Jamaat, at the same time it also portrays their great heights of justice and fair play. Similarly, the guidelines he delivered in light of the Quran, Sunnah and the teachings of the Promised Messiahas to furnish justice, can undoubtedly act as a beacon to provide the world with the best judicial system. 

Al Hakam (Urdu) has preserved a statement of Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra regarding the system of arbitration, in the issue of 7 January 1919:

“The responsibility of the adjudicators is to deliver verdicts, and of the chief adjudicator is to listen to the appeal. Appeals against all of their decisions can be made to the Khalifa of the time, except those decisions in which the Khalifa is himself belongs to a party. In such a situation, the verdict of the chief adjudicator will be final and decisive.”

He further mentioned: 

“There should be adjudicators situated in different areas who have a link with the chief adjudicator. They will have the power to deliver verdicts in respect to those particular disputes regarding which one does not need to be acquainted with matters related to Shariah or matters in which only simple affairs of the Shariah are needed. They will have to take an exam, having educated themselves of the Islamic methods of presenting witnesses, evidence and of simple religious affairs.” 

Mahasha Khushhal Chand, the editor of the Arya Gazette wrote in an issue dated 19 May 1921, “Ahmadi’s possess their own judiciary and are not required to go to any governmental court for cases”.  

After Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra, Hazrat Mirza Nasir Ahmadrh supervised this department and in 1966, said affectionately:

“In his final few years, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maud, Khalifatul Masih IIra could not hear the appeals against the decisions of the Qaza board due to his illness. This was why the verdicts of the board used to be decisive, but now appeals in respect to every verdict of the board can be made to me, even if the duration for the appeal has elapsed, of which only I shall make the final decision.”

During the era of the third Khilafat, the launch of Qaza was brought into effect for the first time in the United Kingdom – aside from Qadian and Rabwah – and Hazrat Sir Chaudhry Muhammad Zafrulla Khanra was appointed the first Sadr Qaza Board of the UK. Afterwards, the names of those who served as Sadr Qaza Board are Anwar Kahlon Sahib, Aftab Khan Sahib, Dr Hamidullah Khan Sahib etc. whereas this service is presently entrusted to Dr Zahid Khan Sahib.  

In the era of the fourth Khilafat, Dar-ul-Qaza also gained the attention, affection and guidance of the Khalifa of the time. In this era, Qaza was established in Canada, Denmark, Germany and the USA.

Many people have partaken in serving in Dar-ul-Qaza, preserving its records and conveying the verdicts and instructions of the Khulafa of Ahmadiyyat to the forthcoming generations. A few names shall be presented for prayers.

Maulana Bakhsh Sahib, assistant of Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra – He was entrusted with the responsibility of presenting cases. After the hearing of a case, he would present the decision in written form, in light of guidance from Huzoorra. After Huzoorra signed the copy, he would deliver the decision to both parties and send a record to the Qaza department. Huzoorra had also appointed him as a special adjudicator to research into some issues. 

Hazrat Maulvi Sher Alira, Hazrat Mir Muhammad Ishaqra, Maulvi Fazluddin Sahib, Maulvi Abdur Rahman Jatt Fazil Sahib, Maulvi Jalaluddin Shams Sahib, Mirza Abdul Haq Sahib, Sheikh Bashir Ahmad Sahib, Chaudhry Mushtaq Ahmad Sahib, Khalil Ahmad Nasir Sahib, Maulvi Abul Ata Sahib Jalandhri, Chaudhry Abdur Rahman Sahib Advocate, Muhammad Ahmed Jalil Sahib, Maulana Nazir Ahmad Mubasher Sahib, Hazrat Sheikh Muhammad Ahmad Mazhar Sahib, Syed Mir Mahmood Ahmad Nasir Sahib, Syed Mir Masud Ahmad Sahib, Syed Qasim Shah Sahib, Syed Qamar Suleiman Sahib, Syed Khalid Ahmed Shah Sahib, Syed Mahmood Ahmed Shah Sahib, Mirza Fazl Ahmad Sahib, Syed Jalid Ahmad Sahib, Syed Mir Mahmood Ahmad Sahib, Maulana Dost Muhammad Shahid Sahib, Munir Ahmad Arif Sahib, Chaudhry Rashiduddin Sahib, Agha Saifullah Sahib, Mirza Khurshid Ahmad Sahib, Quraishi Nur-ul-Haq Tanvir Sahib, Chaudhry Arshad Ahmad Virk Sahib, Waqar Ahmad Khan Sahib, Sardar Muhammad Rana Sahib, Maulvi Tajuddin Sahib and Rashid Ahmed Chughtai Sahib. 

In the present age, on the other hand, Hafiz Rashed Javed Sahib Nazim Dar-ul-Qaza Rabwah, Chaudhry Naseer Ahmad Sahib Naib Nazim Dar-ul-Qaza Rabwah, Danish Ahmad Khan Sahib Naib Nazim Dar-ul-Qaza Rabwah and Malik Naseer Ahmad Azhar Sahib central adjudicator are also gaining the opportunity to partake in this valuable service.

Under the present administrative structure of Dar-ul-Qaza, after the hearing of family and trade disputes respectively by the preliminary adjudicators, higher adjudicators and by the board, the matter is presented to Hazrat Khalifatul Masih. 

In this manner, justice is being delivered to Ahmadis around the world. A brief overview of Dar-ul-Qaza shall now be presented in accordance to countries aside from Pakistan. 

India: After the partition of the continent in 1947, Dar-ul-Qaza Qadian formally commenced their duties once again. The current Nazim is Zainuddin Hamid Sahib who has been appointed since 2007. 

Canada: In 1983, its formal launch was brought into effect. 

USA: Its establishment was in 1984 and the first Sadr of the Qaza board was Sahibzada Mirza Muzaffar Ahmad Sahib. 

Germany: It was formally launched in 1990 and the first Sadr of the Qaza board was Masud Ahmed Dehlvi Sahib. 

Denmark: It was established in 1999. 

Australia: In 2007, its launch was brought into effect. 

Mauritius: It was established in 2013. 

Indonesia: It was launched in 2014. 

The expansion and stability which Dar-ul-Qaza department has gained through the supervision, guidance and attention  of Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih Vaa and for this organisation to have reached a milestone of 100 years in his blessed era is surely a blessing among the many blessings of this era.  

(Translated by Fateh Alam, UK)

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