Book mistrusted by plaintiff confirms change in nass: Defence | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Book mistrusted by plaintiff confirms change in nass: Defence

ByK A Y Dodhiya
Feb 01, 2023 11:35 PM IST

The HC was told that though the plaintiff had cast doubts on the reliability of the book, as its author had rebelled and the book was incomplete, the 51st Dai had held the author in high esteem and had, in fact, gifted a micro-film of the book to former PM Jawaharlal Nehru

Mumbai: Continuing arguments to prove that a Dai could change the nass conferred by him earlier on one person to another person, the counsel for defendant Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin on Wednesday informed the Bombay high court about a book written during the time of the 27th Dai which confirmed the same, and submitted that it was accepted as a doctrine by the Dawoodi Bohra community.

Book mistrusted by plaintiff confirms change in nass: Defence
Book mistrusted by plaintiff confirms change in nass: Defence

The HC was told that though the plaintiff had cast doubts on the reliability of the book, as its author had rebelled and the book was incomplete, the 51st Dai had held the author in high esteem and had, in fact, gifted a micro-film of the book to former PM Jawaharlal Nehru. The counsel submitted that based on the contents of the book, the last nass conferred upon the defendant by the 52nd Dai was doctrinally valid.

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Senior defence counsel Fredun Di’Vitre also referred to the book ‘Al-Muzayyanah’ written by Hasan bin Ali Khan bin Taj during the 17th century about the life of the 27th Dai. The bench was told that the manuscript was in the khizana (depository) of the community at Surat, and extracts proving that a Dai could change his successor till the last moment were being produced before the court.

The bench was taken through a passage in the book wherein the 28th Dai, during a debate with dissenters on the issue of change in nass, had stated that ‘the conferer of the nass could alter/replace, change/degrade or lower/raise the rank/post till the last moment of his life if he so intended as he had the choice to do so’.

Di’Vitre submitted that Hasan bin Ali Khan was a highly ranked dignitary during the time of the 26th and 27th Dais and he had written the book at the behest of his teacher. The senior counsel added that the 51st Dai had praised Hasan bin Ali Khan in his own book, ‘Neyam’, and had referred to him as ‘Maula’ (Master), thus putting to rest any doubts about his eminence. The bench was told that though Hasan bin Ali Khan had rebelled, he was forgiven after he repented, besides which the book was written before he rebelled.

The senior counsel then submitted that though the author and his book were held in high esteem, the plaintiff had extended a different translation, which was held as untenable by Arabic language experts. The experts’ translations, Di’Vitre submitted, were in consonance with the translation provided by the defendant and hence the latter should be accepted. The bench was also told that Aziz Qutbuddin, the brother of plaintiff Syedna Taher Fakhruddin had relied on passages from ‘Al-Muzayyanah’ in his doctoral thesis.

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