Fatwa ID: 05486
Answered by: Shaykh Shafiur Rahman
Salam. A number of our Darul Ulooms in the subcontinent and elsewhere have been using bells for some time to indicate, for example, the beginning and end of lessons. Is there any write-up on its permissibility/impermissibility (esp. since bells are generally regarded as haram and spoken against in Hadith)?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Imam Muslim narrated in his Saheeh (2113) from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The angels do not accompany any group with whom there is a dog or a bell.”
Al-Sarkahsi in al-Sharh al-Kabir said: ‘some scholars follow the apparent meaning of the Hadith, and so, they disliked using bells on riding camels on journey and war as well using them in legs of the young. I think using bells is disliked during the war (in a hostile state) since they indicate the place of Muslims. But, in the Muslim land, using bells is beneficial to the owner of riding camels.’
Ibn Abideen also mentions citing Bazzazi that the hadith of prohibiting bells was during wartime as it would give away the presence and location of the Muslims.
It was mainly prohibited for the above reason as well as according to some scholars if it made continuous melody like a musical instrument. Since the purpose of the bells in the madrasah is short and just to signal certain times this would be permissible as there is some benefit in it.
Written by Shaykh Shafiur Rahman
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham
وَمَا رُوِيَ فِي الصَّحِيحِ أَنَّهُ – عَلَيْهِ الصَّلَاةُ وَالسَّلَامُ – قَالَ لِرَافِعِي أَصْوَاتِهِمْ بِالتَّكْبِيرِ «ارْبَعُوا عَلَى أَنْفُسِكُمْ إنَّكُمْ لَنْ تَدْعُوا أَصَمَّ وَلَا غَائِبًا إنَّكُمْ تَدْعُونَ سَمِيعًا بَصِيرًا قَرِيبًا إنَّهُ مَعَكُمْ» الْحَدِيثَ – يُحْتَمَلُ أَنَّهُ لَمْ يَكُنْ لِلرَّفْعِ مَصْلَحَةٌ فَقَدْ رُوِيَ أَنَّهُ كَانَ فِي غَزَاةٍ وَلَعَلَّ رَفْعَ الصَّوْتِ يَجُرُّ بَلَاءً وَالْحَرْبُ خُدْعَةٌ وَلِهَذَا نَهَى عَنْ الْجَرَسِ فِي الْمَغَازِي
ص398 – كتاب الدر المختار وحاشية ابن عابدين رد المحتار – فصل في البيع – المكتبة الشاملة الحديثة