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Switch to Forum Live View Is a Woman Considered Responsible for Rape?
5 years ago  ::  Feb 06, 2010 - 7:25PM #1
koolpoi
Posts: 6,591

If a woman is raped,does Sharia call for her to be punished under certain circumstances?Apparently in Pakistan,a rape victim must produce 4 male witnesses of good character to avoid punishment.In Bangladesh a 16 year old girl was lashed for becoming pregnant as a result of rape.The idea seems to be that the woman is assumed to be at least partially responsible for a rape unless she can prove otherwise.Is there an authoritative teaching on this?

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5 years ago  ::  Feb 09, 2010 - 2:41PM #2
sagha
Posts: 18

 


The laws in Pakistan are a particularly twisted version of shari'ah. For details, I refer you to the excellent article by the legal scholar Asifa Quraishi, titled "Her Honor: An Islamic Critique of the Rape Laws of Pakistan from a Woman-Sensitive Perspective". You can download it at the following web page:


www.law.wisc.edu/faculty/pubs.php?iID=63...


It is long and somewhat technical, but her point is that the laws are strongly influenced by cultural traditions biased against women. She presents textual evidence from the Quran and the Prophet Muhammad's tradition, as well as opinions of traditional legal scholars, to make her point.


Serene


 


Her Honor: An Islamic Critique of the Rape Laws of Pakistan from a Woman-Sensitive Perspective
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5 years ago  ::  Feb 09, 2010 - 8:55PM #3
koolpoi
Posts: 6,591

Thank you for the information.Would it be fair to say the versions of shariah in Bangladesh,Saudi Arabia,Iran and Iraq are also distorted by cultural attitudes to women?Is your view shared by scholars at major Muslim centers of study like Al Azar in Cairo?I'm trying to understand where the general consensus of Muslim scholars lies on this issue.

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5 years ago  ::  Mar 05, 2010 - 1:10AM #4
BDboy
Posts: 6,210

Act of Rape is total violation of Islam and rights given to women by God. So should not be any argument on that side. Any man knowingly violates right of a fellow human being should be punished as per Islam.


 


If the women is involved in indicent exposure or some other immoral acitivites that is a seperate issue and we should not mix them up. Punishment for rape in Saudi Arabia is death. However it has go through a court of law like most countries.


In fundamental understanding of Islam there is no difference in Sharia law. Some application of Sharia differs because of cultural differences.


 


For more information, you may go to the following sites.


 


<> www.islam-guide.com/


 


<> www.welcome-back.org/


 


 

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5 years ago  ::  Mar 05, 2010 - 1:21AM #5
BDboy
Posts: 6,210

Kopol I am not sure about your sources. Bangladesh is not an "Islamic country". It is a Muslim majority country only. Laws of Bangladesh comes from British common law like US laws.


 


You may not know that, it is being ruled by women for last 20 years and four elections took place within that time. I am sure the prime minister of Bangladesh would not allow it to happen. Sometime people spread distorted information about Islam because some of our non-Muslim friends are ill informed about islam and ready to accept anything they hear. That does not mean everything in Bangladesh is perfect or Muslims are prefect. Just like other people and other faiths, people try to abuse Islam and laws to their own advantage. Islam has been a positive influence in Bangladesh for many centuries. In that respect you can call Bangladeshi Muslims very tolerant and open.


Despite good laws and good people thousands of women are being raped in the US every week. It shows people are people!!


 


There is no fundamental bias against women in Islam. It is a fair and just system for all. For more information, you may visit the following web sites.


 


www.welcome-back.org/


www.islam-guide.com/


www.quraan.com/


 


May peace be unto you. :-)

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5 years ago  ::  Mar 09, 2010 - 9:00AM #6
Abdullah.
Posts: 882

Hi Koolpoi, 


I can assure you that women are not responsible for being raped at all, and i will look into this allegation of women being lashed when they claim they have been raped inshAllah 


I think this might have something to do with, not being able to prove rape, thus they may get lashed for making a rape allegation on someone without the required witnesses/evidence, thus in order to protect the honour of innocent people being falsely acused or rape, this lashing detterent may be there, but as I say this is just a guess from me and nothing defenite for now


I think there may be a verse in the Quran that whoever makes an allegation of adultery on a chasty women [i.e, they make a false allegation, due to there being not sufficient evidence] they should be lashed if they cannot bring forward the required evidence/witnesses?; this is to protect chasty womens honour; I think this verse may have been revealed concerning the hypocryts' claim that Hazrat Ayesha [ra] commited adultery [naudhubillah min zalik!], hence, there may be a simmilar detterent for mans honour to be protected too from false and harmfull allegations; we see how in the west, as soon as a women cries 'rape' the alleged perpetrator gets locked up in remand and his career and reputation is destroyed, even though he may be found not guilty after a couple of years, so just imagine if a spitefull woman 'has it in' for someone and just to 'punish them' she falsely acuses him of rape?, hence Islam could have a detterent for such things 


Another thought that comes to mind is that, when there is no sufficent evidence for rape, then if the authorities can be sure [due to concrete evidence] that at least fornication or adultery took place, then maybe the women [and the man for that matter] will be applied the penalty for it 


InshAllah i'll try and find some definitive evidence on it but for now, here are a few fatwas on this issue [as i say, the above are just conjectures from me due to certain impressions i got from the evidences i faintly remember to have seen, so lets not jump to any conclusions just yet and keep an open mind as to what Islam really says about it Smile]:


Question: If a woman is raped, does she have to bring up 4 witnesses to get the rapist convicted? If so, what is if she gets pregnant. Will she get punishment since juridicaly she is guilty of adultery? And can modern technics be used in order to proof that she was being raped.


I read somewhere else, that she has to bring up 4 witnesses, but it seems very unlikely, since if there were 4 witnesses theese would obviously done something to help her. Can u please bring some light into this whole complicated topic.


Answer:


Walaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,


I pray this finds you in the best of health and spirits.


This is a common myth about Islamic criminal law. Rather, the four witness requirement applies only to the prescribed hadd punishment (which in the case of a married person could be death and for the non-married, 100 lashes). [Marghinani, Hidaya] This punishment is only applied in very rare cases, as is clear, and is meant to be a social deterrent, above all.


As the classical and contemporary jurists (such as Mufti Taqi Usmani) have made clear, a rapist can be convicted on lesser evidence (including scientific evidence, such as DNA tests and medical reports) for discretionary punishments. These discretionary punishments are left up to the legal system to determine.


However, it is a myth to say that Islam would in any way condone rape, or allow a rapist to go free for this terrible crime against an innocent human being and against society.


And Allah alone gives success.  


Faraz Rabbani


qa.sunnipath.com/issue_view.asp?HD=7&ID=...


Question: Why is rape victim expected to produce atleast 4 witnesses in order to have her rapist convicted? Why is she accused of adultery incase she cant and given a punishment of stoning to death?


Answer:


Respected Sister-in-Islam Kindly find below our standard response to a similar query:


According to the Islamic law, Hadd is defined as a specific punishment for committing a specific crime which is the right of God and human beings. (Hidaaya vol.2 pg.506; Ilmiyyah) Islam propagates respecting life, wealth and honour. The Prophet Muhammad (may the peace and blessings be upon him) declared in his farewell pilgrimage, 'Behold, Verily your blood, your wealth and your honour is sanctified like the sanctity of this day (the tenth of Dhul-Hijjah - last month of the lunar calendar when Muslims perform Hajj and sacrifice animals), this month (Dhul-Hijjah) and this city (Makkah).' (Bukhari vol.1 pg.234; Qadeemi) All three are sanctified by a believer.


The purpose of punishments is to deter criminals from committing crimes that will effect the safety of one's life, wealth and honour. The punishment of cutting the hands for theft is a means of protecting one's wealth.


The punishment of lashing a person for false accusations is a means of protecting one's integrity.


Similarly, the punishment of stoning a married person to death for committing adultery is a means of protection from all the evils that emanate from the evil of adultery which leads to breaking of families, abortion, illegitimate children, etc. Each one of these evils have become an unbearable burden even to the first world countries. THE PUNISHMENT FOR ADULTERY IN ISLAM The punishment for adultery has two categories: Adultery committed by an unmarried person or a married person. This distinction becomes necessary because the punishment varies for both. Punishment of adultery for an unmarried person is 100 strokes of lashes. (Qur'aan - Chapter 24 verse 2) Punishment of adultery for a married person is stoning to death, if he/she is; a) A free person (not a slave), b) Sane, c) Physically mature, d) Muslim, e) Married, f) Had intimacy with his spouse. (Hidaaya vol.2 pg.507; Ilmiyyah) This punishment was unanimously upheld by all the Islamic Jurists based on the order and practice by Prophet Muhammad (may peace be upon him).


The crime must be proven beyond the shadow of doubt as the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) is understood to have stated, 'Hudood will fall off due to doubts.' (Tirmidhi vol.1 pg.268; HM Saeed) The laws of evidence in Islamic law are strict.


If the witnesses are not honourable as stipulated in Islamic law or there is any inconsistency in any one of the witnesses statements, the accused will not be convicted. In fact, the witnesses will be punished for making a false allegation. (Shaami vol.4 pg.8; HM Saeed).


If the Qaadhi (presiding Muslim judge) is satisfied that the allegation is true and proven beyond the shadow of doubt will he issue the decree of punishment for adultery. and Allah Ta'ala Knows Best


Mufti Ebrahim Desai, Camperdown


www.askimam.org/fatwa/fatwa.php?askid=2a...


Peace Smile

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5 years ago  ::  Mar 09, 2010 - 10:41PM #7
koolpoi
Posts: 6,591

So if a woman is raped and has no witnesses,her only sensible choice is to  stay silent?It seems to be her responsibility to avoid situations where rape is possible.The rapist ,of course, knows this and can feel secure except for divine punishment after death.Is that right?Please note that when I refer to a country as Muslim,Christian,Buddhist etc.,it simply means the majority of the population belongs to that faith.No country lives completely in accordance with the ideals of its majority religion.The laws of any country are implemented according to the prevailing values of the country.Muslims must surely be influenced by Sharia values even if it has not been codified as the country's law.

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5 years ago  ::  Mar 10, 2010 - 2:26AM #8
Abdullah.
Posts: 882

Also lets consider the possibility that a woman who has been 'caught' commiting adultery or fornication, can claim that she was 'raped' in order to save herself from the punishment or absolve herself from blame and humliliation, but the authorities may find no evidence of coercion involved, thus when the woman gets punished for her crime, her family and herself maintains her 'rape' claim in order to play the innocent victim, thus every 'rape' claim of a woman lashed or stoned should not be believed without proper evidence; the western media would ofcourse uphold her 'rape' claim as it is in their interest to discredit Islam

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5 years ago  ::  Mar 11, 2010 - 3:01AM #9
koolpoi
Posts: 6,591

I see your point Abdullah. If a woman benefits from claiming rape, that does raise questions about her credibility.But considering the difficulty of proving her claim,the damage to her reputation and the potential punishment it seems safer to deny anything happened. And I would agree that Western media is influenced by its cultural background in covering Islamic matters.

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5 years ago  ::  Mar 11, 2010 - 10:04AM #10
Abdullah.
Posts: 882

Al-Hamdulillah, i have by the grace of Allah managed to get to the bottom of this issue and am now in a position to clarify the mainstream view regarding why the western media sometimes say that a woman got lashed for being raped in Saudi, Pakistan or Bangladesh!


Here are my findings:


the presumption that a woman who claims to have been raped and cannot provide four witnesses is lashed for not being able to do so is a myth; this type of principle which is called 'qazaf' [slander] in Islam is only applicable to adultery and sodomy, i.e if an allegation of iether is made on a chasty man or woman, and the alleger cannot come up with the required witnesses, is lashed for the 'false acusation' in order to portect the honour of chasty people


Basically what happens is, if a woman and man is 'caught' having fornicated or commiting adultery, then in a place like Pakistan or Saudi, there is great shame involved for the perpetrators, espeically the women and her family and also the threat of the corporal punishment looms over them, hence the woman usually [and most of the times? pressured by her family as well] claims that she was raped in order to save herself and her family from shame and to save herself from the punishment; 99 percent of the time, in such cases, when illegal sexual activity is proven, the man gets punished and the woman gets let of due to a doubt of wether she really willfully took part in it [due to her claim of rape] and rarely, willfull compliance on the part of the woman is overwhelmingly proven, hence she gets punished; however in order to save herself and her family from shame, she and her family maintains the 'rape' story and the western media has a feild day uphloding her claim and trying to denigrate the religion of Islam to it's people


The above conclusion is clear to see from the words of a great Sunni Scholar, Mufti Taqi Usmani, who was a shariah judge too in pakistan dealing with such cases for 17? years, and thus speaks from inside knowledge of the Pakistan legal system, and obviously the profound Islamic knowledge too; the following excerpts of his article says it all Smile:


Now arises the question why is there so much insistence on abolishing the shara’i punishment for Zina bil Jabr (rape)? The reason for this is an extremely unjust propaganda which certain circles are busily spreading ever since the Hudood ordinance has been implemented. According to this propaganda, if any rape victim intends to sue the offender under the Hudood ordinance, she is asked to produce four witnesses to support her claim. And if she fails to do so, she herself is arrested rather than the offender. This claim has been and is repeated incessantly, so far that even educated people began to consider it as true. And exactly this point has been used as justification by our president during his speech.


Now if as a result of such propaganda a certain matter is publicized so much that even the children on the streets talk about it, and then people tend to view anyone who talks against it as insane. But if anyone wishes to analyze the matter in a just way, then I would like to request him to leave all propaganda aside for a while, and consider the following points:


The fact of the matter is that I myself have been directly hearing cases registered under Hudood Ordinance, first as a Judge of Federal Shariah Court and then for 17 years as a member of Shariah Appellate Bench of the Supreme Court. In this long tenure, not once did I come across a case in which a rape victim was awarded punishment because she was unable to present four witnesses. It was actually not possible only because of Hudood Ordinance because according to Hudood Ordinance the condition of four witnesses was necessary only to enforce the Shariah punishment (hadd). But at the same time clause 10(3) was included to award the taa’zeeri punishment which did not have the condition of four witnesses. Instead the crime could be proven through one witness, medical examination and chemical analysis report. Consequently most of the rape criminals were awarded punishment as per this clause.


What we need to think is that if a woman was unable to present four witnesses and she was given punishment, which clause of Hudood Ordinance was used to award her the punishment? If anyone says that she was punished because of Qazaf (false accusation of rape) then Qazaf Ordinance, Clause no. 3, Exemption no. 2 clearly states that if someone approaches the legal authorities with a rape complaint, she cannot be punished in case she is unable to present 4 witnesses. No court of law can be in its right mind to award such a punishment. The other possibility could be that the woman is awarded punishment for committing adultery with free will. And if the court of law takes such a decision it may not be because the woman was unable to present four witnesses but because the court arrived at this decision after giving due consideration to all the available evidence. Obviously if a woman accuses a man of raping her but subsequent evidence proves that she committed adultery with her free will and her accusation proves to be false then punishing her will not be against the spirit of justice. But since usually there is lack of sufficient evidence to proof that the woman is lying, even such cases are rare. In 99% of the cases it so happens that the court of law is not convinced that the woman has been raped yet since there is lack of sufficient evidence to prove the willful involvement of the woman, she is given the benefit of doubt and set free.


This can be verified very easily by doing an analyses of the cases executed under Hudood Ordinance in the last 27 years. Other judges who have been involved in the proceedings are of the same opinion that even when a woman’s character is found doubtful she is not punished; only the man gets punished.


Since from the very beginning voices are being raised against Hudood Ordinance that innocent women are being punished because of it, an American Scholar Charles Kennedy got interested and visited Pakistan to conduct a survey of the cases. He analysed all the data related to Hudood Ordinance cases and presented the results in the form of a report which has been published. The results are very much in line with the above mentioned facts. He writes in his report:


Women fearing conviction under Section 10(2) frequently bring charges of rape under 10(3) against their alleged partners. The FSC finding no circumstantial evidence to support the latter charge, convict the male accused under section 10(2)….the women is exonerated of any wrongdoing due to reasonable doubt rule.
(Charles Kennedy: The Status of Women in Pakistan in Islamization of Laws page 74)


This is what an unbiased non-Muslim scholar who has got no sympathies toward the Hudood Ordinance observed with regard to such women who had actually consented to committing Zina, and then due to the pressure from side of their families, tried to declare their deed as Zina bil Jabr. They were not asked to produce four witnesses, but to furnish circumstantial evidence. On being unable to furnish circumstantial evidence which would give weight to their claim of having been raped, only the male parties were punished, whereas the female parties went unpunished, as no transgression could be proven on their part. Hence there is no such clause in the Hudood Ordinance according to which, if a woman fails to produce four witnesses to support her claim of having been raped, she is to be punished rather than the offender.


It is however possible that during investigations conducted by the police, and before the matter could be brought to the court, some rape-victims were indeed wrongly and without any justification arrested as committers of Zina bir-Radha (adultery). However this is no flaw in the Hudood Ordinance. Unfortunately the police in our country are quite prone to commit such acts of injustice while enforcing the law. But this does not mean that the law has to be changed. In our country, keeping heroin is a crime. And it happens quite often that the police themselves hide some heroin with innocent citizens only to pressurize them afterwards. Should we then—in order to resolve this situation—abolish the law according to which keeping heroin is a crime?


Through its decisions, the Federal Shar’iah Court had several times set an end to maltreatment which rape-victims had to suffer at the hands of the police. However, if one was to assume that this risk has not yet been fully eliminated, then one could draft a law according to which no woman claiming to have been a victim of rape could be arrested under any article of the Hudood Ordinance, until the court has delivered its final judgment. Besides, one could make further laws stating the punishment for one who wrongly arrests a rape-victim. But under no circumstances is it permissible to abolish the punishment which the Holy Shari’ah has laid down for Zina bil Jabr.


hamditabligh.web44.net/niswan/index.htm

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