The Quranic Law of Retribution

PROF G R MALIK

The Amnesty International reports with a sense of taken-for-granted complacency and a holier-than- thou attitude that a person was beheaded in Saudi Arabia because he had killed another person. It further adds that in 2012 seventy-four people were sentenced to death in the country for serious offences like rape and murder. How do these statistical data compare with what happens in other countries, particularly in Europe and America, where around one hundred people are, killed every day by marauders, professional killers and happy-go-lucky guys choosing to go on a killing spree! The upshot is that these marauders and professional and amateur killers should enjoy the birth-right of freedom of action to kill innocent human beings but a judge should be banned from sentencing a criminal and murderer to death and thus save countless human lives. In other words let people die of contagious cancer but do not permit the doctor’s knife to nip the evil in the bud. This is what happens when Satan applies his magic touch to human reason (yatakhabbatuhu al-Shaitanu min al-muss). The Quran says:
Whoever slew a person – unless it be for murder or mischief on the earth – it is as if he slew the whole of mankind and whoever saved a person it is as if he saved the whole of mankind.(5:32).
The implication is that one who can take one innocent life can potentially kill all human beings. When some three decades ago the notorious killer, Billa, was tried and cross-examined in Delhi he told the court that he be hanged because if he is set free he will continue to kill people. Having killed a few people, he said, he had got addicted to killing and would not be able to sleep well without shedding human blood. This is why the Quran lays down the law of retribution, Qisas:
And in retribution is life for you, O men of reason.(2:179) 

Lastupdate on : Thu, 3 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 3 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 4 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST




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