Hazrat Ali (R) was the fourth Caliph of Islam. He was the son-in-law of the Prophet. For his bravery he was called the “Lion of Allah.”
One day Hazrat Ali’s (R) favourite shield was stolen. After a long search it was found with a Jew. He asked him to return the shield. But the Jew refused to return it. He said that the shield was his.
Hazrat Ali’s (R) companions were very angry. They were ready to take the shield by force. But Hazrat Ali (R) stopped them saying. “No, you must not do it. There is no difference between the Caliph and his subjects. So I shall rather go to the court of Justice,”
Kufa was the capital of the Arab Republic and Sharih was the Qazi of Kufa. So Hazrat Ali (R) sought the help of Sharih’s court, It was the Caliph who had appointed Sharih Qazi.
The day of the trial came. The Jew appeared before the court. The court was full. The Qazi had already taken his seat. Then came the Caliph. He passed through the crowd and stood before the Qazi. He saluted the Qazi with due respect. The Qazi showed him no special respect.
Qazi (to the Jew): Did you steal the shield of the Caliph?
Jew: No. The shield is mine. But he has brought a false charge against me.
Qazi (to the Caliph): Who are your witnesses?
The Caliph: My son, Hasan and my servant Qambar are my witnesses.
Qazi: I cannot allow such witnesses.
The Caliph: Why? Do you think they will not speak the truth?
Qazi : Not so. I know that you are very pious. You are also a relative of the Prophet. But according to the Prophet, a son cannot be a witness of his father. Neither a servant can be a witness of his master. So you lose your case.
Hearing the judgment, the Jew was very much surprised. He went to the Caliph and presenting him the shield said, “The shield is really yours. Please take it. Yours is a wonderful law. It makes no difference between the Caliph and the humblest of his subjects.”
The noble Caliph was satisfied with the judgment of the Qazi, thought it had gone against him. The Qazi had shown him his mistake. So, his respect for the Qazi increased all the more.