Gatherings during an Epidemic

Fatwa ID: 03532

Answered by: Maulana Naieem Mohammed

 

Question

Salaam. How are you and family? Hope all is well. I wanted to ask you a question with regards to Friday prayer. With the possible risk of increase of the virus, should people with a chronic infection or chronic disease such as heart issues, lung issues, kidney issues etc. say there Friday prayer at home?

 

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

 

Answer:

Definitely, we are in an ever-changing world. Keep in mind that every country/locality will be facing a different situation and the solutions may vary according to the culture of the people among other factors.

At times we may encounter challenges such as epidemics/pandemics which affect all human beings. The following Shari’ guidelines should serve as advice during such times:

· “There is no consideration for mere assumptions/doubts”[1]

If there is no proof/threat of the spread of infectious disease, then it will not be permissible to inject fear amongst people due to social network media from unauthorized sources.

It will also not be permissible to refrain from attending Jummua Salaat/Salaat in congregation due to mere doubts/suspicions.

We are encouraged to base All our decisions on facts provided by the relevant health authorities/governments.

 

· “Prevention of destruction is better than attracting a benefit”[2]

· “One harm cannot replace another of similar scale”[3]

· “A specific harm may be tolerated to prevent harm to a greater scale”[4]

A Muslim who has contracted a harmful/highly infectious disease should refrain from gatherings voluntarily in order to safeguard his Muslim brothers from any possible harm. It will be permissible for such a person to perform Zuhr in place of Jummua.[5]

If, however, he attends the Jummua/Salaat in the congregation, then separate facilities should be made for such persons.

If there are at least 4 Muslim males who have contracted an infectious disease then it will be allowed for them to perform Jummua[6] in the area where they have quarantined themselves making one of them an Imam/khateeb. If, however, they attend the Jummua/Salaat in the congregation, then separate facilities are to be made for them.

 

· “Harm should be avoided as far as possible”[7]

if there is a solid reason to believe that ourselves or any other Muslims will be greatly harmed to such an extent that their life may be lost, then it will be permissible to avoid gatherings such as Jummua or Salaat in the congregation for such individuals only, e.g. in the case of a virus that primarily affects the vulnerable of society, the ones who suffer from chronic diseases, etc are advised to refrain from gatherings as long as the harm exists.

When the conditions change then the permissions will also change.

 

Only Allah knows best

Written by Maulana Naieem Mohammed

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

 


[1] Qawaaid Ul Fiqhiyya,pg 25.# 11

[2] Qawaaid ul Fiqhiyya,pg 34.# 23

[3] Qawaaid ul Fiqhiyya pg 32. # 18

[4] Qawaaid ul Fiqhiyya pg 34. # 22

[5] Noor ul Idhaa.pg 77

[6] Noor ul Idhaa.pg 116

[7] Qawaaid ul Fiqhiyya,pg 31.# 16

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