Ayesha Shahid, Isfandyar Ali Khan

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A general view prevalent in Pakistan based on the classical Hanafi principle is that in cases of marital breakup custody of the male child is to be given to father at the age of seven and of a female child on attaining puberty. However the emphasis on the principle of the ‘Best interest of the child’, as introduced in the Guardians and Wards Act 1890 remains a priority of the judges in Pakistan. This chapter traces the evolution and development of the ‘Best interest of the child principle’ in Pakistani child law. By including a review of judicial cases from 1997-2014, the chapter evaluates the application of this principle by the superior judiciary in Pakistan.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationParental Care and the Best Interests of the Child in Muslim Countries
EditorsNadjma Yassari, Lena-Maria Möller, Imen Gallala-Arndt
PublisherT.M.C Asser/Springer
Number of pages36
ISBN (Electronic)978-94-6265-174-6
ISBN (Print)978-94-6265-173-9
Publication statusPublished - 29 Mar 2017


  • Pakistan
  • Child custody
  • Best interests of the child
  • Islamic law
  • Guardians and Wards Act 1890
  • Superior judiciary

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law


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