This incident shows the various types of falsehood and deception which would be employed by the mischief-makers. In that era, when the press and means of transport were not as developed as today, it was very easy for these people to mislead the uneducated. In reality, however, these people had no legitimate reason to rise up. Neither did the truth support them nor did they speak the truth. All their endeavours were founded upon lies and falsehood. It was only the mercy of Hazrat ‘Uthman(ra) that was saving them, otherwise, the Muslims would have torn them to pieces. The companions could not have ever tolerated that the peace and security which they had achieved by sacrificing their lives be done away with in this manner by the mischief of a few wicked people. They could see that the Islamic state would crumble if these people were not promptly punished. However, Hazrat ‘Uthman(ra) was an embodiment of mercy and he desired, in any way possible, for these people to be rightly guided so that they would not die in a state of disbelief. As such, Hazrat ‘Uthman(ra) would show leniency towards these people and looked upon their actions of manifest rebellion as a mere intention to commit rebellion, and would put off their punishment.
This incident also illustrates that the companions greatly detested these people. The reason being that firstly, the mischief-makers stated themselves that only three people of Madinah were with them and no more. If other companions were also on their side, they would have named them as well. Secondly, the companions demonstrated through their actions as well that they abhorred the actions of these mischief-makers; and looked upon their deeds as being in violation of the shariah to such extent, that in their view, no punishment lesser than execution was acceptable. If the companions supported these people or the people of Madinah held the same views as the mischief-makers, they would not have needed any further justification or excuse; and would have killed Hazrat ‘Uthman(ra) there and then, and elected another person for the office of Khilafat in his stead. However, we observe that instead of these people being successful in killing Hazrat ‘Uthman, may Allah be pleased with him, their very own lives became endangered by the unsheathed swords of the companions. It was only due to the favour and kindness of the very same gracious and compassionate person — whom they sought to murder and against whom they had instigated an outrage — that they were able to safely escape. One is astonished at the malice and unrighteousness of these mischief-makers, for they did not derive the slightest benefit from this incident. Each and every one of their allegations was amply refuted and all their objections were proven to be false and unfounded. They witnessed the mercy and compassion of Hazrat ‘Uthman(ra) and the soul of every individual bore witness to the fact that the likes of such a person cannot be found on the face of the earth at this time. However, instead of repenting for their sins, being ashamed of their cruelties, feeling remorse for their trespasses and refraining from their mischief, these people began to burn even more in the fire of rage and fury. They considered their being rendered speechless a disgrace and the forgiveness of Hazrat ‘Uthman(ra) as being the result of their good planning. As such, they returned whilst devising strategies to fulfil their remaining plan in the future.1
1 Tarikhut-Tabari, vol. 5, p. 152, Dhikru Masiri Mann Sara Ila Dhi Khashabin Min Ahli Misra….., Published by Darul-Fikr, Beirut, 2002 edition [Publishers]