Current Legal Issues
- (Q.11) Is it permissible for a Muslim to cook unslaughtered
meat, noting that he has nothing to do with selling or serving it?
What is the ruling on serving najis (un-slaughtered) food or
delivering it to non-Muslims? Is there a difference between pig meat
and other kinds of meat?
- There is no objection to cooking unslaughtered meat or serving it
to those who believe that consuming it be lawful (according to their
doctrines). Selling it is problematic; however, there is no
objection to receiving money in exchange for tanazul
(forgoing one's right) or by way of Istinqath (recovery of
money from the unbelievers).
- (Q.12) Is it permissible for a Muslim to work in restaurants
that serve pig meat or alcoholic drink? If it is not permissible
does the ruling extend to washing cutlery and the like?
- Serving alcoholic drink to the others is haraam, even though it
might be all right for them to consume it. The same goes for washing
cutlery, if it was used for drinking alcoholic drink.
As for serving pig meat to those who have no problem in consuming it
(for no apparent objection of their faith], it could be permissible;
selling it, though, is not permissible, without any shadow of a
It is batil (unlawful) for a Muslim to pay himself for work
that is forbidden to him; receiving wages for such work is haraam.
Of course, there is no harm in assuming ownership of the money by
way of Istinqath.
- (Q.13) [This is a complementary question to the preceding one].
Is it permissible out of necessity? If necessity is paramount, what
are the limits of it?
- Committing a forbidden act driven by necessity, over which you
have no control or through no choice of yours, renders haraam
injunctions void and no sin shall be upon you. However, such an act
must be confined to the minimum that might remove the necessity, for
necessities are governed by their magnitude. Nevertheless, for a
person to be driven by a pressing need to serve alcoholic drink in
return for money is a mere assumption, whose realisation is hard to
come by, considering that it can hardly happen, if not only by
wilful choice. Allah says, "..and whoever is careful of (his
duty to) Allah, He will make for him an outlet, and give him
sustenance whence he thinks not.." (65/2, 3). He also says,
"Surely (as for) those whom the angels cause to die while
they are unjust to their souls, they shall say: In what state were
you? They shall say: We were deemed weak in the earth. They shall
say: Was not Allah's earth spacious, so that you should have
migrated therein? So these it is whose abode is hell, and it is an
evil resort, except those who were deemed weak from amongst the men
and the children who have not in their power the means nor can they
find a way (to escape)" (4/97,98).
- (Q.14) Is it permissible for a Muslim to work in a restaurant
that serves unslaughtered meat?
- It could be permissible only when it is served to those who think
it lawful [according to the precepts of their faith]. Rather,
without making it known to the consumer, in case it might affect
their choice, which could lead to them abstaining from consuming it.
Otherwise it is not obligatory.
- (Q.15) What is the ruling on wages earned for work in such
restaurants? Are they considered as earnings tainted with illicit
money? Could they be licit for the worker in return for his work
that is halal?.
- Wages received by a Muslim from non-Muslims for work, that is
lawful to them, is considered licit earnings, albeit they may have
earned such money by means that are not lawful according to our
religion, such as the sale of pig meat and alcoholic drink. Such
wages are not considered tainted money, on which Khums is due.
- (Q.16) Some times a person, who works in a restaurant, serves
non-Muslims with unslaughtered meat and pig meat. You have ruled on
the first part of the question before. What is the ruling on serving
pig meat, noting that if he refuses to do the work, he might, as
well, lose his job?
- There is ishkal in serving pig meat even to those who deem
it licit, abandoning it by way of ihtiyat is advisable.
- (Q.17) Is it all right for a Muslim to own [or run] a
restaurant, where unslaughtered meat is served, noting that he is
not personally involved in the work and that his role is confined to
supervising and administering the place? On the assumption that it
is not permissible, how can one make good the money earned? What is
the position of his dependants, such as his wife and children
insofar as maintenance goes?
- There is no harm in owning such a restaurant, only when serving
unslaughtered meat is done for those who deem it lawful. In the
event of serving it to a Muslim, one must inform him that it is not
halal meat. In so doing he might [positively] affect the consumer's
decision; otherwise it is not obligatory. As for the earnings,
making them good is by way of Istinqath or tanazul.
Once it is thus legitimised, it can be so for the dependants. In
case he did not do so, they should assume ownership of what he pays
them in kind [i.e. material things, be they money, provisions and
goods]; only then it will be halal for them. Allah is All
- (Q.18) Is it permissible for a Muslim to work in places where
alcoholic drinks are sold or at entertainment places, without being
involved in serving alcoholic drinks or other sinful acts, such as
washing dishes and preparing tables, etc.?
- It is not permissible in the places where alcoholic drink is sold.
Work in entertainment places is not recommended on the premise of ihtiyat
luzumi (obligatory precaution)..
- (Q.19) There are many grocery stores where, besides groceries,
sandwiches of pork and other unslaughtered meat are sold. On top of
that they also sell lottery tickets. People working in these stores
are required to handle the sandwiches and lottery tickets. All types
of customers come, Muslims as well as non-Muslims, where it is
difficult to distinguish one from the other. Is it permissible to
work in such stores?
- It is not permissible to sell pig meat even to non-Muslims. It is
not permissible too, by way of ihtiyat, to sell unslaughtered
meat, even to those who deem it licit. The same ruling goes for the
sale of lottery tickets - it is not permissible.
- (Q.20) Lottery is a well-known chance game in the States. Is it
permissible for a Muslim to sell its tickets through a machine?
Could the transaction be based on the principle of istinqath?
- If he was authorised by the company concerned with its offer and
distribution among non-Muslims, it is permissible. Receipt of the
money could be justified on the principle of istinqath, not
by way of vending. He could, also, receive it by way of tanazul,
if he had haqul ikhtisas (prerogative) over it.
- (Q.21) Is it permissible for a Muslim, who owns a hotel, the
majority of whose customers are unbelievers, to serve them with
alcoholic drink or unslaughtered meat?
- As explained in an answer to a similar question, it is not
permissible insofar as alcoholic drink is concerned. As regards
unslaughtered meat, it is permissible.
- (Q.22) Is it permissible for a Muslim to work in a grocery shop
where alcoholic drink is sold, noting that he is not involved in
handling it; he works as a cashier?
- It is permissible for him to receive the money for the other
goods, and the money for alcoholic drink only when the vendor and
the buyer are non-Muslims.
- (Q.23) What is the ruling on work in the places where
unslaughtered meat is prepared, where the involvement is in the
latter and has nothing to do with selling it?
- It is permissible. There is no harm in receiving wages for such
- (Q.24) An electrical engineer, working in Europe, is sometimes
called out to repair loudspeakers and similar instruments. Sometimes
he has to go to places where entertainment takes place. Is it
permissible for him to carry out repairs to such equipment and
install new ones? It is noteworthy that if he refused such work it
might adversely affect his work, for customers shall leave him.
- It is permissible.
- (Q.25) Is moving (tanaqul) [commodities], the sale of
which is unlawful to Muslims, in order if it was done through
relinquishing (isqat) one's haqul ikhtisas
(prerogative) over it ?
- Yes, Allah is all knowing.
- (Q.26) Is it permissible for a Muslim to buy from shops [or
other businesses] owned by Hindus, if one knew that they help their
co-religionists there [in India] against Muslims ?
- It is not permissible if it contributes to making them transgress
against Muslims. Allah is All Knowing
- (Q.27) Is it permissible to buy from [non-Muslim] owners of
business, in the knowledge that they help their co-religionists
- It is not permissible if it leads to bolstering them against