Assalamualaikum Mufti Sahab,
- A doctor cheated vigorously in all his university exams to get a degree, although subsequently, he is practising well, alhamdulillah. Patients, relatives and colleagues are very hopeful about his future. Also, he has some unique treatments of some diseases which he learnt later from other famous Ayurveda consultants (which are not so common). Will his income be halal or haram at present and in future? Can he use this money at home and for performing hajj? What about building a home or for his children’s education?
- Is there any relation between the extent of cheating and the earnings being halal? For example, if he cheated a great deal, then is there more chances of the earnings being haram? Irrespective of how the doctor is treating the patient now.
- Is it like playing with the life of the patients? (Keeping in mind I only take particular diseases of patients.)
- Will I be responsible for not curing a particular patient despite trying my best? Please do clear all my doubts.
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Lying and cheating is a very serious sin in Islam. The Prophet once passed by a pile of food in the market. He put his hand inside it and felt dampness, although the surface was dry. He asked: "O owner of the food, what is this?’ The man said, ‘It was damaged by rain, O Messenger of God.’ He said, ‘Why did you not put the rain-damaged food on top so that people could see it! Whoever cheats us is not one of us." [Sahih Muslim]
This hadith is similar to your case. When people go to you for treatment, they assume you have honestly completed a specific type of education. Since you cheated, you are deceiving them. Therefore, this must be rectified by either going back and completing the parts of your education that you skipped or by removing your credentials publicly.
Regarding your question, this person’s income will be lawful if they are safely practising medicine, but they will be sinful for lying to obtain the degree. However, if the cheating resulted in them not properly knowing medicine, and potentially causing harm to others, then the income might be impermissible as well.
Only Allah knows best
Written by Maulana Mustafa Umar
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham