Long before the promulgation of the Contract Act, 1872, the Transfer of Property Act, 1882 and the Evidence Act, 1872 (replaced by the Qanun-e-Shahadat, 1984) the Holy Qur’an had prescribed that such contracts should be in writing (Al-Baqarah (2) verse 282), yet it is surprising that many Muslims even after fourteen centuries do not abide by this important instruction of their religion. An oral contract, by its very nature, is difficult to establish. Since the terms of an oral contract are not self-evident, the plaint seeking the enforcement of an oral contract must set forth the contract’s requisite ingredients, including when the sale consideration and/or its balance is to be paid, which the plaint did not disclose. Therefore, the suit could have been dismissed on this ground alone.

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