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Petition filed in SC as not to use Quranic word for any living person

24 August, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: After sadiq and ameen became buzzwords in the political discourse of the country following the disqualification of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif under Article 62(1)(f) of the Constitution, a lawyer requested the Supreme Court on Wednesday not to employ these virtues as a benchmark for electoral and judicial purposes.

Moved by Shahid Orakzai, a local advocate, the petition asks the apex court to order that no word or title used in the Holy Quran for the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) be used for any living person.

The petitioner has requested the court to note that the word sadiq, meaning honest, was a unique title reserved for the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) and asked whether a Muslim could ever compare himself to God’s Messenger merely by filling out a nomination form during elections.

“Can the title of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) be used as a label by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP)?” the petition asked, adding that no individual could be declared sadiq simply by correctly declaring his material assets in the nomination papers.

Such a title could not certify or disqualify a candidate or any member of the National Assembly, the petitioner argued, adding that the recent judgement disqualifying the former prime minister for not being sadiq and ameen had been widely misinterpreted.

The petitioner said the judgement in the Panama Papers case did not consider the oath of the prime minister, wherein it was required that he would not allow his personal interest to influence his official conduct or decisions.

This meant that the Constitution made the prime minister admit that he did have personal interest before making a commitment about his official conduct or official decisions. That was where the prime minister’s honesty really counted, requiring him to protect the national interest, which should have been considered in the judgement, the petition said.

Honesty might be “the best policy” in English language, but it just could not match, or even equal the implications of the word sadiq, which meant a lot more than “truthful”.

According to the Holy Quran, a person may claim to be ameen, but no person can proclaim himself to be sadiq, the petition stated, adding that the two words depicted two different character traits.

Likewise, the petition said, the word “honest”, used in Article 62(1)(f) of the Constitution, could not be exclusively applied for electoral purposes and its later insertion in the document in 1985 could not be confined to the Representation of the People’s Act (RoPA) 1976.

He contended that Article 62 of the Constitution should not be read as an examination paper for candidates of the National Assembly. It only portrayed the qualities of the person who was considered suitable by the voter to discharge the given constitutional duty, the petition maintained.

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