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Khalifa Ali bin Abu Talib - Judgements of Ali

Dispute about the custody of money

Once two friends proceeded on a journey. Before departing on the journey they kept some money in custody with a woman. She was enjoined not to return the money unless both of them came together to claim it. After some time, one of them came to the woman and said that as his other partner had died, the amount kept in custody be returned to him. He produced some sureties, and the woman returned the amount to him. After some time the other man who was reported to be dead appeared and claimed the money from the lady. She said that his other friend had taken away the money on the grounds that he had died. The man insisted on payment on the grounds that she was committed not to return the amount unless both of them were present. The dispute dragged on, and the man brought the suit in the court of Ali. Addressing the plaintiff Ali asked, "Your stand is that the money was not to be returned unless both of you were present?" The plaintiff said, "Yes, my lord, that is so". Ali said, "Then go and bring your partner, so that the amount may be delivered to you." The man actually wanted to play a ruse, and at this wise decision of Ali, the attempt to fleece the poor woman was frustrated.

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