In the dispute of Fadak, the rulers insisted that Hazrat Fatima Zahra (s.a.) present two male witnesses (or equivalent female witnesses). When Hazrat Fatima Zahra (a.s.) presented Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) as witness they rejected his testimony as being a sole witness and demanded that she advance more witnesses (i.e. two males / four females). Furthermore, they alleged that Ali’s (a.s.) witness was biased as he was an interested party being the husband of the defendant i.e. Hazrat Fatima (s.a.).
When Hazrat Fatima Zahra (s.a.) advanced more witnesses, the rulers dismissed even those on frivolous counts.
Sole testimony of Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) was sufficient for Fadak
Fact of the matter is that there was no need for rulers to insist on two (male) witnesses when one was enough.
The personality of Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) should have sufficed as a lone witness.
Leave alone Ameerul Momineen (a.s.), by consensus of both sects, Khuzaimah Ibn Thabit was titled Zu-Shahadatain (owner of two witnesses) by the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) as he considered his witness equal to two witnesses.
- Al-Ikhtesaas p 64
Others like Abu Zarr, were also known for their truthfulness and the Muslims of the time never doubt his word.
The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) informed:
‘…the green sky has not sheltered, nor has the earth carried a more truthful one than Abu Zarr.’
- Al-Manaqib of Khwarazmi p 84
- Faraid al-Simtain v 1 p 166
The credentials of Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) are far higher than those of all other Muslims put together so demanding an additional witness to back his testimony is plain ignorance and stubbornness and even takes one outside the realm of Islam – can one dare demand a witness to back the witness of Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.), although Muslims are guilty even of this!
Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) will never deviate others on any issue..and that includes Fadak
The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) informed Ammar bin Yasir:
Soon there will be confusion after me in my nation till swords are drawn out and some are killed by others and a group distances itself (tabarra) from another group. When you witness this, then it is mandatory for you to hold on to this bald one on my right i.e. Ali Ibn Abi Talib (a.s.). If all the people venture into a valley and Ali (a.s.) ventures into another valley, then you must head for the valley of Ali (a.s.) and abandon the people. O Ammar, Ali (a.s.) will never turn you away from guidance and will never guide you towards destruction. O Ammar, obedience to Ali (a.s.) is obedience to me and obedience to me is obedience to Allah, the Almighty.
- Kashf al-Yaqeen p 161
- Basharah al-Mustafa v 2 p 146
- Al-Umdah p 451
- Tarf min al Amba wa al-Manaqib p 460
The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) already laid out a prescription for the Muslims during times of confusion and disputes, including the one over Fadak.
Hence the sole of witness of Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) in favour of Hazrat Fatima Zahra (s.a.) was sufficient to settle the Fadak dispute. No other witness was necessary, and no other report or testimony could be allowed in opposition to Ameerul Momineen’s (a.s.) testimony given the Holy Prophet’s (s.a.w.a.) clear instruction in this regard to follow him (a.s.) and abandon others.