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14th Fiqhi Seminar

Date: 20-22, June 2004
Venue: Darul Uloom Sabeelus Salam Hyderabad A. P. (India)
Subjects: Relationship between Muslims and non-Muslims, World peace and Islam, Gelatin and metamorphosis, Creation of new Awqaf

Four specific issues were discussed and pondered over collectively by a number of noted scholars during the 14th Fiqhi Seminar of the Islamic Fiqh Academy held at Dar-us-Salam during 20 to 22 June 2004. These included Relationship between Muslims and non-Muslims, Islam and world peace, Gelatin and the issue pertaining to the urgent need of the Millat to create new Awqaf as well as the Sharai provisions in order to make them profitable ones. More than two hundred renowned and distinguished Islamic scholars, Islamic jurists of repute and Muftees from the country as well as from abroad participated in this Seminar. Although all the themes mentioned above are extremely vital and relevant, however, in view of the present global and national circumstances, the subjects of ‘Relationship between Muslims and non-Muslims’ together with ‘Islam and the World Peace’ assume special significance which is naturally, a shade higher than the rest. The general observation and collective perception of the participants of the Seminar is that Muslims being a humanitarian and welfare Ummah should have better relationships with their non-Muslim brethren one which is characterized or marked by tolerance, harmony and a good moral behavior. The participants also noted that they also need to improve their relationships with the non- Muslim brethren and promote mutual co-existence from a humanitarian perspective as well as from the viewpoint of Dawah. The important recommendations unanimously accepted during the Seminar were:

Relationship between Muslims and non-Muslims

  1. Islam has its own distinctive permanent system of governance. However, in the perspective of the present global circumstances, as compared to other non-Islamic systems of governance, the prevalent democratic system is preferable and more suited to the Muslim minorities. Therefore, under the political system, it is perfectly permissible for Muslims to partake in the electoral process, contest the elections, and exercise their franchise as well as to participate in any election campaign for any candidate.

  2. It is the demand of the Milli and the religious interests and aspirations of the Muslims to exercise there legal and constitutional right to vote, in an aggregate and wholehearted way.

  3. It is not permissible for Muslims to join or be associated with those political parties that unabashedly declared their party’s motive of opposing Islam and Muslims. Further, it is not appropriate to vote for any candidate of such a party, no matter if he is a person of good character in personal terms.

  4. Pacts and agreements can be made with democratic and secularpolitical parties in the greater interests of the community.

  5. A substantive course of action can be followed along with the like-minded non-Muslims to create an atmosphere of peace and security ensuring fairness and justice in the society, in the larger interests of the country and the mankind. Organizations can also be formed along with them in order to tread a collective path.

  6. Muslims should prefer to settle down in such areas where they could uphold their religious identity. A system of education ought to be established which would protect and uphold the spirit and identity of their religious as well as Milli character.

  7. There are certain obligations in Islam towards the non-Muslim neighbours as well as the related ones. Therefore, it enjoins upon the Muslims to be hospitable towards them, look after them and sympathize with them particularly in situations where they are unwell or sorrowful.

  8. The songs like Vande Matram contain words that have definite connotations with shirk. In other words, there is a clear conception of the Indian land being treated as god. In this respect, it is certainly forbidden and unlawful for Muslims to sing such kind of songs, from the point of view of Shariah. It is also obligatory upon them to refrain from it.

  9. In case certain judgments are made in favour of any Muslim on the basis of established non-Islamic law of evidence or some other such laws, which are not in consonance with the tenets of Shariah, then it is not permissible for him to take advantage of them whatsoever. This Seminar appeals to all the Muslims to seek the help of Dar-ul-Qaza itself for resolution of their conflicts or disputes. They should also abide by the decisions or judgments taken up by it and take a subsequent course of action in accordance with the judgments passed. Further, this system holds more relevance because, with respect to certain cases, the judgment of a Muslim Qazi only stands appropriate and justified from the point of view of Shariah.

  10. The concept of “Unity or Similarity of religions” is absolutely un-Islamic. It is also in stark contradiction with the principles enshrined in the Holy Quran as well as the Sunnah besides being highly unrealistic and non- beneficial from the practical viewpoint. Putting it frankly, it is nothing but a sinister attempt to malign and destroy the identity of Islam. It is also a malevolent stratagem or conspiracy to detract Muslim from the straight path. Therefore, the Muslim ought to realize it and keep off from this evil concept.

  11. Islam has due respect for the humanity. Therefore, it is a moral and religious obligation upon the Muslims to help their oppressed non-Muslim counterparts on the grounds of humanitarian values, as far as possible.

  12. As far as the welfare institutions run by Muslims such as hospitals etc. are concerned, there ought not be any distinction in rendering their selfless services towards any religion or community. This itself is the core objective of human welfare and Islamic teachings, although it should be kept in mind that the Zakah amount is spent on desiring Muslims only.

  13. It is the underlying primary message of Islamic teachings that the Muslim organizations should sympathize and show compassion towards the fellow countrymen, especially in catastrophic circumstances such as natural calamities or accidents. Rehabilitation tasks should be undertaken without any discrimination.

World peace & Islam           

  • Each and every such act of violence which aims at inducing fear or danger in any individual or community without any Sharai reason or which puts his life, property, honour and dignity, country, religion and faith at stake, can be termed as Terrorism. It is immaterial whether any individual, organization or government perpetrates this act, as such.
  • Any such activity or action taken by the State or Government or authority which makes any individual or organization bereft of it’s fundamental rights or which harms it in some way or the other, is also nothing short of Terrorism.
  • It is the basic right of the victim or oppressed person to raise his voice against any kind of injustice, through effective and appropriate mean. The defence by the victim against oppression or tyranny cannot be termed as Terrorism.
  • It is not permissible to seek vengeance from an innocent person belonging to the group, which is supposedly responsible for oppression and tyranny.
  • The possible solution to the menace of terrorism is to provide fairness and justice to all the people in an effective manner, to ensure complete respect for human rights, safeguard and protection of life and property and to provide due opportunity to all human beings to lead a life with honour and dignity, irrespective of any radical, religious, cast or gender distinctions.
  • In the event of any attack on the life or property or dignity or honour of any individual, one has the full right to defend himself.

Gelatin

Gelatin is an organic substance, which is a type of protein. It is formed when another protein the Collagen found in the skin and bones of animals undergoes chemical transformation. The substance so obtained takes the form of a new form of protein, the chemical and medicinal properties of which are absolutely different from that of the Collagen. It is also dissimilar to the Collagen in terms of its colour, smell, taste and other characteristics.

In case, the substances, which have been described as impermissible by the Shariah, undergo a complete process of metamorphosis, then the validity of the law does not hold well. The special or basic properties of the substances, by which it has been universally accepted and identified, are the real characteristics and identification of the substance. According to the research undertaken by the scientific experts, gelatin does not posses the characteristics and properties of the skin and bones of animals, whose collagen is used to prepare gelatin. In fact, a new substance is produced which has distinctly different characteristics from its parent substance. Therefore, there is a room for its use. In view of the differences in opinion between the experts, one of the distinguished delegates of the Seminar, Maulana Badrul Hasan Qasimi expressed his preference for avoiding the use of gelatin, which is obtained from the parts of impermissible animals, as far as possible.

In view of differences between the jurists as well as the importance of edible substances, the Seminar earnestly appeals to Muslim businessmen and traders to prepare gelatin only from permissible animals using the permissible and clean parts of their body, so that there may be no dubiety over the issue of permissiveness and lawfulness.

Alcohol

Alcohol is a chemical substance, which is prepared by the process of decomposition of various kinds of carbohydrates or sugar present in fruits and cereals. It is of many types, but only one of them is intoxicating in nature.

Certain medicinal drugs contain Ethyl alcohol. This type of alcohol is intoxicating in nature and it does not lose its characteristics inspite of being mixed in the drug. However, as far as the treatment and cure are concerned, the Shariah does mention some provisions, by which the consumption of alcohol-containing drugs is permissible, in case no other alternative is available.

According to the research reports of the experts, the alcohol used in the preparation of perfume is not intoxicating in nature. Therefore, it is not unclean.

Wakf

Wakf has been given enormous importance in the Islamic history. It is the institution of Wakf by which various great cultural, literary and public welfare tasks have been rendered successfully. Keeping these facts into consideration, the Seminar the Seminar proposes the following recommendations:

Effective measures have to be taken to get the Muslim Awqaf in India rid of the illegal and illegitimate government or non-government control, to expand the Awqaf property, to make them profitable and to invest the Awqaf funds, taking care of the due provisions of Shariah in view of the current implications.

New Awqaf should be created in order to cater to the needs and the aspirations of the widows, divorcees, orphans, the sick and the needy.

“Educational funds” should be established to look after the needs of the needy students and to extend financial help to them in the form of scholarships and stipends.

Fund for religious institutions’ should be established for the betterment of religious centres and Islamic madrasas.

Philanthropists should participate wholeheartedly in this endeavour to accomplish the above-mentioned objectives in diverse fields, and thus become entitled to the Continuos Charity.

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Islamic Fiqh Academy (India) (IFA) was established in 1988 at New Delhi under the guidance and supervision of the great known Islamic Scholars.

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