A Muslim policeman, Zahruddin Shamsuddin Bedade, has refused to join the force without his beard. Bedade was employed with the Maharashtra Reserve Police Force when he was asked to shave off his beard, keeping in accordance with existing rules and regulations on the subject.
Bedade was permitted to keep a beard by his commandant, provided that he kept it clean and trimmed at all time. However, after a few months the commandant took the permission back and ordered a court-of-inquiry. In 2012, the Bombay High Court ruled against the policeman saying that the police force is a secular agency and its rules and regulations must be adhered to. The court also ruled that keeping a beard is not one of the founding rules of Islam and hence is not a primary right.
The apex court in 2013 paused the administrative inquiry against Bedade. His lawyer, Mohammed Irshad Haneef, pleaded that Hadis Law in Islam makes it mandatory for Muslim men to grow a beard and this is part of the lifestyle that Prophet Mohammed had asked his men to follow.
The apex court, during the hearing, asked Bedade to join the force back. Bedade did not reply clearly and hence, the Chief Justice dismissed his plea for a faster resolution.