Which oath — one taken before the court and the other done on the holy scripture — weighs more with an individual in a secular State? Your instant reply would be the one taken before the court as speaking untruth would land you in jail. But you are wrong, some persons are more worried about the other world than being merely jailed.
To its great surprise, the Delhi High Court has learnt that an oath taken upon holy scripture has a more sobering effect on an individual than the one taken before the court.
Justice Kailash Gambhir came across a man who gave a false statement before him on oath but when he was sent to a mosque to make the statement a second time holding the Quran Sahrif in his hands, he admitted the truth.The man, Mohammed Shamim, recorded the true statement at the mosque pertaining to a settlement under which he had agreed to give the possession of a shop to a man on payment of Rs.5 lakh in the presence of two court-appointed officers—Deputy Commissioner of Police K.K. Vyas and senior advocate Ashok Bhan—who had volunteered to oversee the proceedings at the shrine at the request of Mr. Justice Gambhir.
Mohammed Shamim has more respect for the Quran Sharif than the court was once again evident before Mr. Justice Gambhir when he reiterated his earlier false statement before him after telling the truth at the mosque that there was no compromise between him and the other person, Shahnawaz Khan, regarding transfer of the ownership of the property.
Mohammed Shamim had agreed to let Shahnawaz Khan keep the possession of the shop on payment of Rs.5 lakh. He had also executed the compromise by accepting Rs.1 lakh Describing the decision to send the two–Mohammed Shamim and Shahnawaz Khan–to the mosque for recording their statements by holding the Quran in their hands as unusual, Mr. Justice Gambhir had sent them for a religious oath taking when the two had given contradictory statements regarding the compromise but at the same time expressed their desire to make the statements swearing by the Quran Sharif.
Mohammed Shamim had later tendered an unconditional apology before the Court for lying on oath before it, but Mr. Justice Gambhir dismissed it and convicted him of the charge of committing contempt of court. “……this court is of the considered view that Mohd. Shamim has committed contempt of court in the face of the court. He has also committed a greater sin by repeating his untruthful and false stand in the court… after speaking the truth in the mosque”, Mr. Justice Gambhir said.
“Therefore, by the powers granted to this court under Article 215 of the Constitution of India, this court holds the…. Mohd. Shamim guilty of contempt,” Mr. Justice Gambhir said.