One of basic purposes of Islamic law is to protect dignity of members of Islamic society. To fulfill this purpose. Islamic law forbids false accusations without strong and valid evidence. Islamic law also forbids false accusation of unchastely of chaste persons. Forbidding of false accusation of unchaste is, in fact, basis of concept of Qazf.
Following are the relevant provisions of concerned ordinance, regarding the topic Section 3 to 8 of offence of Qazf (Enforcement of Hadd) ordinance VIII of 1979.
(i) Literal Meaning
The literal meaning is "throwing out".
(ii) Primitive Sense Meaning
Qazf in its primitive sense simply means accusation.
(iii) Language of Law Meaning
Qazf in the language of law is understood as any one insinuating a charge of whoredom against a married man or woman; the person so acting being termed the 'qazif' or 'slanderer' and the man or woman so scandalized the "makzoof" or "slandered".
If a person makes or publishes an imputation of Zina about another person and he/she intends to harm reputation or hurt feelings of such another person or he/she knows or has reason to believe that such imputation will harm reputation or hurt feelings of such another person, this person is said to commit qazf.
(a) Making or Publishing of Imputation of Zina
There must be making or publishing of imputation of Zina the term publish means that it must be communicated to some person other than the person to whom it is addressed.
(b) Concerning Any Person
Imputation of Zina must be against some particular person or persons whose identity can be established.
(c) Intention or Knowledge to Harm or Hurt the Reputation or Feelings
It is sufficient that the accused intended to harm or knew or had reason to believe that the imputation made by him would harm the reputation or hurt the feelings of the complainant.
According to Explanation 1 of section 3, it may amount to Qazf to impute Zina to a deceased person, if the amputation would harm the reputation or hurt the feelings of that person if living, and is harmful to the feelings of his family or other near relatives.
(d) Mode of Imputation
Imputations of Zina may be made in either the following modes
i. by words, which may be either spoken or intended to be read.
ii. by sings or visible representation that will include every possible form of imputation.
According to explanation 2 of 3, An imputation in the form of an alternative or expressed ironically may amount to Qazf.
Following are the exceptions to the offence of Qazf Under Section 3.
(a) Imputation of Truth which Public Good requires to be made
It is not Qazf to impute Zina to any person if the imputation be true and made or published for the public good.
(b) Accusation Preferred in Good Faith to Authorized Person
It is not Qazf to prefer in good faith an accusation of zina against any person to any of those who have lawful authority over that person with respect to the subject matter of the accusation. Good faith does not merely imply absence of ill-will but pre-supposes reasonable degree of care and caution in making an amputation. (PSC 1984 S.C. 1)
It will amount to Qazf if
i. complainant makes an accusation in the Court but fails to produce four witnesses in support thereof before the Court.
ii. "Naheed Ahmad vs. Mahmood Khan (1991)" Respondents failed to produce four witnesses in support of their claim. The were held liable for the offence of Qazf.
iii. According to the findings of the Court, a complaint or a witness has made false accusation or given false evidence, as the case may be, of Zina or Zina-bil-Jabr.
Kinds of Qazf
Following are two knids
(i) Qazf liable to hadd
Qazf liable to hadd is committed when an adult person intentionally and without ambiguity commits qazf of zina to liable to hadd against a particular person, who is a muhsan and capable of performing sexual intercourse.
(ii) Qazf liable to Tazir
Qazf becomes liable to tazir when such qazaf is not liable to hadd or when proof against such qazaf in not available through confession of accused or through tazkiya al-shuhood or when qazaf is not committed in presence of court.
When Qazaf is Liable to Hadd?
Qazf becomes liable to hadd when an adult person intentionally and without ambiguity commits qazaf of zina liable to hadd against a particular person, who is a muhsan and capable of performing sexual intercourse.
Proof of Qazf Liable to Hadd
Following are considered proof of qazaf liable to hadd.
(i) Confession before Court
Confession of qazaf before a court of competent jurisdiction is considered a proof against qazf liable to hadd.
(ii) Commission of Qazf in Presence of Court
Commission of qazaf in presence of a court is considered a proof against qazaf liable to hadd.
(iii) Commission of Qazf in Presence of Witnesses
According to requirements of tazkiyah al-shuhood, evidence of at-least two qualified witnesses is considered a proof against qazf liable to hadd.
Punishment of Qazf Liable to Hadd
Following are two kinds of punishment have been provided against qazaf liable to hadd
Convict of qazaf liable to hadd should be whipped with eighty stripes.
Evidence of convict of Qazf liable to hadd should not be admissible in any court of law.
To conclude, it can be stated that Islamic law has declared false accusation of adultery haraam. To check false accusation of adultery, strict conditions have been imposed to prove accusation of adultery; only reliable, strong and direct evidence of eye-witnesses can prove accusation of adultery.