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12. Human Rights, Natural Justice and Pakistans Shariat Courts

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Chapter Summary

This chapter deals with setting up of the Federal Shariat Court as court of appeal against convictions under the Hudood Ordinances and as the only court with the jurisdiction to examine the validity of laws on the basis of Islam was a truly revolutionary measure. The Pakistanis experience with a judicial review based on Islam not only sheds light on an area of law which is of very real relevance to any debate on religion and human rights but is also of interest in a comparative perspective. In addition to a right to equality based on Islamic law the Federal Shariat Court also formulated general principles of natural justice, the most important being the right to be heard. Principles of natural justice were also applied in relation to the quantum of compensation payable by the government in cases of compulsory acquisition of land.

Keywords: Federal Shariat Court; human rights; Islamic law; natural justice; right to be heard; right to equality



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