Concept of public administration in Islam

Islam encompasses each and every aspect of human life irrespective of its nature but the rules that must be followed while running a state are the cornerstone of Islamic teachings. The reason for giving so much importance to this aspect of human life is the collective effect of governance on all the subjects of a state.

Quran, Source of Islamic Law
Quran, Source of Islamic Law
Here we are going to discuss some of the very important pillars of Islamic guidance that makes a state a welfare state in the true sense.
Legal justice
A symbol of Islamic Justice
A symbol of Islamic Justice

Laws of the Islamic Sharia are very clear on the subject of providing legal justice. Quran, Sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) and the traditions of the rightly guided Caliphs make it compulsory for the state to dispense legal justice at all costs without taking care of the ramifications or backlash from the wealthy or influential people.  It was at the time of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) that a woman named, Fatima, was found guilty of stealing. The woman belonged to the influential tribe of Bani Makhzum and the tribesmen presented Hazrat Usama bin Zaid ( adopted child of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w)) as an intercession for the Woman to be spared. The Holy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) rejected it by saying that “people before you were destroyed because if an influential would steal, he would be forgiven and if a poor would commit such act, the legal punishment would be inflicted upon him”.  The Holy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) then said, “ By God, even if she was the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w), she would not be spared”.
The Rashidun Caliphs also followed the same tradition and the precedents set by them became a standard not only for the Ummah but for the whole world to follow. The Second Pious Caliph was once ordered to appear in court for some matter. When he entered the court, the judge stood up in honor of the Caliph. When the Caliph saw the Judge behaving like this, he dismissed him from the post by saying that all members of the state are legally equal irrespective of their positions.
The Fourth Caliph, Imam Ali (r.a), once filed a case against a man in the court for stealing his armor. The Caliph presented his son and his slave as evidence against the man. However, the judge rejected both of them by saying that both are too close to the Caliph to be accepted as evidence. The man who was Jew impressed so much by the justice of the judge that he accepted Islam and gave the Caliph his armor.
The Quran also ordered quite clearly each and every one of us to dispense justice in our control. The Allah Almighty says in the Holy Quran,” No Doubt, Allah orders justice and good conduct” ( Surah Al-Nahl). Similarly, Allah says,” If you judge them, judge between them with justice” ( Al- Maidah).

Moral justice
Moral Justice is also an important part of Islam. As per the rules set by Islam, no one is allowed to abuse anyone or the personalities he reveres, no one is allowed to violate the honor of women in the society and no is allowed to spread false rumors about others Nor one is allowed to backbite against others.
The Islam clearly lays down some laws according to which a person committing such things will be brought into the court. If a person blamed another person of committing adultery or other such things and he did prove it in the court of law then according to the Islamic teachings he will be given the same punishment as that of the accused. This strict punishment is for the purpose to make it as a deterrent against any false blames.
Similarly, if any person was blamed for any moral corruption without any evidence can pursue his legal rights in the court of law. The Holy Prophet (s.a.w) termed backbiting as the eating of the flesh of a dead brother.

Economic justice
As Islam is a complete guide for all the aspects of human life so Islam definitely deals with the economic needs of a man. Islam orders the head of the state and other officials to take care of their subjects and provide them with every kind of economic assistance in case if they are poor. Islam has introduced a moderate system in the economics in which every person who has the means to earn to a certain level will have to give 40 percent of his wealth in the way of Allah ( the way through which poor will be supported by the state). Allah says in the Quran,” Those who believe in the unseen, establish prayer and spend out of what we have given them” (Surah Al-Baqara).
The Quran instructs Muslims by saying” You shall observe the prayers and give the obligatory charity” ( Surah Al-Baqarah).
The life of the Prophet Muhammad and that of Rashidun Caliphs are practical manifestation of the Holy Quran and serves as a guiding light for all of us. It was the norm for the Holy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) to give all of what he had to the poor and would spend his life even without eating for several days. During his Caliphate, Hazrat Umar (r.a) would move around in the cities to get an idea of the security, safety, and needs of the citizens. One day the Caliph was passing through a street when he heard some children crying. The Caliph inquired their mother that why they are crying. The mother said that they had nothing to eat tonight. The Caliph went back to Baitul mal and brought a sack full of flour for them. This was the level of justice of the Great Rashidun Caliph.
Protection
Islamic Law provides protection to all the sections of society irrespective of their religion, caste, color, creed or status. When the Holy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) migrated to Medina he not only signed an agreement of the formation of a nation state with Jews and other people but also pledged to protect the communities in case of any war from outside. When the Muslims conquered Makkah, it was the Prophet of Islam who announced a general amnesty for all the excesses committed by the Quraish against Muslims. The Islamic protection ranges to all sections of society and the Allah Almighty and Holy Prophet Muhammad makes it forbidden for Muslims to even smell the fragrance of Heaven if they kill any of the Non-Muslim. The Holy Prophet Muhammad says,” Those who kill Non-Muslims in the Islamic state will remain deprived even of the fragrance of the Heaven”
( Hadith).
The second Caliph of Islam, Hazrat Umar (r.a), conquered Jerusalem during his Caliphate. The Christian clergy offered him to pray at their Cathedral but the Caliph of Islam turned down the offer by saying that if I prayed here the Muslims may consider it a place of Worship of Islam in future. The caliph did not want to create even a minute difficulty for the non-Muslims residents of the state. Islam has termed the killing of one person as the killing of whole humanity.
Efforts for welfare of the people
The Islamic state is not only responsible to strictly enforce the rule of law but also to work for the welfare of the people. Hazrat Usman (r.a) on the direction of Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) bought half of  Bair-e-Roma from a Medinite and spared it for the public use irrespective of religion.
The Second Caliph of Islam, Hazrat Umar (r.a), formed a separate department called Bait-Ul-Mal to transparently distribute Zakat and other funds among the poor class. The Holy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) and his rightly guided Caliphs would serve the same life which the common people of the state would live. Once Hazrat Abu Bakar (r.a) was asked to increase salary for himself but he refused by saying that if the poor can live on a daily wage I m getting how can I increase for myself.

Islam introduced the concept of Zakat to take care of the needs of the poor sections of the society.
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About Muhammad Asim

Muhammad Asim is a passionate blogger and the founder and editor of the Politicalaxis.com
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