Khalifa Abu Bakr - Ash'as bin Qais

Ash'as bin Qais. When after the fall of the fort of Nujeir the sealed document with Muhajir was opened it was found that the name of Ash'as was not included in the list of ten persons who were to be granted amnesty. Muhajir felt delighted at this and said, "O enemy of Allah, your name is not included in the list, and thus prepare yourself for death." 'lkramah came to the rescue of Ash'as, and at his instance, it was decided that Ash'as should be sent to Madina, where Abu Bakr would decide his fate. Ash'as was accordingly put in chains, and taken to Madina along with other captives.

At Madina, Ash'as was presented before Abu Bakr. The Caliph reproached him for apostatizing from Islam. He also criticized his conduct in betraying his own people. Ash'as bore these reproaches without being ruffled in any way, and then pressing into service all the wit, eloquence, and charm of which he was master, made the Caliph believe that instead of having sinned, he had been sinned against. He tried to create the impression that he had been forced to take the stand that he had taken because the Muslim administration at Zafar had mishandled the affairs and acted tactlessly. He assured the Caliph that he was always a Muslim, and that even when forced to take up arms against the Muslim administration he had remained at heart a Muslim.

Abu Bakr felt that Ash'as was a man of great parts and that the proper course for the administration should have been to win his collaboration rather than drive him to the hostile camp. Abu Bakr granted him amnesty. Ash'as won the favor of the Caliph to such an extent that he was married to Umm Farwa a sister of Abu Bakr. It is related that in honor of the celebration of his marriage, Ash'as went to the camel market at Madina, and inflicted cuts with his sword on the hamstrings of every animal that came his way. In a few moments dozens of camels were thus disabled. When the owners protested he paid them the price that they demanded. A large crowd gathered, and he asked them to have the animals slaughtered and feast upon the meat to celebrate his marriage to the sister of the caliph. He said that if he had been in his hometown he would have celebrated the marriage on a grander scale. Ash'as settled at Madina. In later years of his life he fought with distinction in Syria, Iraq, and Persia. Under Usman be was made the Governor of Azarbaijan.

Treachery was, however, in the very blood of Ash'as. One of his daughters married Imam Hassan, and she poisoned her husband at the instance of Amir Muawiyiah. On his death bed Abu Bakr gave expression to some of the regrets of his life. One of his regrets was that he should not have pardoned Ash'as, but should have beheaded him.

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