Fatwa ID: 05498
Answered by: Alimah Safiyya-Maryam Ahmed
Is selling codeine linctus (opioid-based cough suppressant) haraam. I work in a pharmacy and we often get drug addicts/misusers who either come in regularly or want to buy such products in large quantities as it helps aid sleep. Would selling such products be considered as facilitating further drug misuse or are they seen as two separate entities?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Pharmacists have a duty of care to their customers therefore selling codeine, which is a high-risk medicine because of well-known problems associated with its misuse, abuse or overuse, must be done with appropriate safeguards in place according to the General Pharmaceutical Council. For example, there must be sufficient controls in place to prevent repeat sales or to identify trends in requests, so if you have any concerns you should make them known to your supervisor.
Likewise from an Islamic perspective, to sell somebody an item that you are sure will be used to harm them or somebody else will not be permissible. The duty of care amongst believers to help, assist and advise towards that which will benefit people and to turn them away from that which will harm them should be even greater than that of a medical professional towards their customers.
For Allah, Azzawajjal commands, “Help each other in righteousness and piety and do not help each other in sin and aggression. Fear Allah. Surely, Allah is severe at punishment.” [5:2]
The Prophet [s] stated, “The religion is sincerity/goodwill. We said, “To whom?” He (peace be upon him) said, “To Allah, His Book, His Messenger, and to the leaders of the Muslims and their common folk.” [Muslim]
Only Allah knows best
Written by Alimah Safiyya-Maryam Ahmed
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham
ذهبالجمهورالىانكلمايقصدبهالحراموكلتصرفيفضيالىمعصيةفهةمحرمفيمتنعبيعكلشيءعلمانالمشتريقصدبهامرالايجوز (الموسوعةالفقهية,الجلد٩, صفحة٢١١)