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Khalifa Ali bin Abu Talib - Defection of Talha and Zubair

Defection of Talha and Zubair

When the oath of allegiance was taken to Ali, the state of affairs in Madina was not normal. The majority of the Muslims in Madina took the oath of allegiance, but a few persons abstained from taking the oath. These included Saad b Abi Waqas; Abdullah b Umar; Usama b said; and Muhammad b Musalama Ansari. They, however, assured Ali that they would not create any trouble for him. On such assurance, Ali did not press for their allegiance.

As the crisis in Madina deepened, and Ali gave the call for military action against Muawiyah, even the people who had taken the oath of allegiance did not respond to the call. The people of Madina were generally loath that the Muslims should fight against Muslims. Talha and Zubair met Ali and suggested to him that if one of them was appointed as the Governor of Kufa and the other was appointed as the Governor of Basra they would help in the consolidation of his rule. Ali did not accept the offer. He preferred to appoint his own men as the provincial Governors. He told Talha and Zubair that he wanted them to remain at Madina by his side as his Counselors. Frustrated in their attempt to get governorships, Talha and Zubair felt embittered. They requested Ali to permit them to go to Makkah for performing the Umra. Ali refused the permission on the ground that he wanted their presence in Madina in public interest. Thereupon Talha and Zubair escaped from Madina secretly. At Makkah, Talha and Zubair joined Ayesha. Both of them were related to Ayesha. One sister of Ayesha was married to Zubair and another sister was married to Talha.

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