Leading ulema issue fatwa assuring Muslims inoculations are in line with shariah and it is the responsibility of every individual to avail them
Vaccination against the novel coronavirus is “legal and permissible” in Islam, and is in accordance with shariah, members of the Darul Ifta Pakistan announced on Monday.
Announcing the fatwa (religious decree) at a press conference in Lahore, Special Assistant to the P.M. on Religious Harmony Tahir Ashrafi said it was being issued with the consent of ulema, mufits and leading scholars of Darul Ifta Pakistan.
According to the fatwa, it is the responsibility of every individual to get themselves vaccinated, as it is needed to prevent the ongoing pandemic. It stresses that vaccinations are permissible in accordance with shariah and urged philanthropists to come forward and help those who cannot independently purchase it.
The fatwa was issued following a series of meetings of member states of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation.
Leading by example
Ashrafi noted during the press conference that leading Muslim figures had already gotten vaccinated, proving there was nothing to fear. Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais, Mufti-e-Azam of Saudi Arabia, the president of Palestine and other important Muslim leaders have all been vaccinated, he stressed.
Darul Ifta Pakistan, he said, supported Sheikh Al-Sudais’ fatwa regarding vaccination during fasting, adding that in according to Islamic law it does not break anyone’s fast. To a question, he said that the government would ensure a supply of vaccines for Hajj and Umrah pilgrims in line with requirements of the Saudi Arabian government.
Referring to Prime Minister Imran Khan, he said that the premier had directed for all precautionary measures mentioned by Saudi Arabia for Hajj and Umrah pilgrims to be fully implemented.
To another question, Ashrafi said there was no proposal under consideration to close mosques during or before Ramzan to curb the spread of the third wave of the pandemic. At the time, Prime Minister Imran Khan had claimed that “zero cases of COVID-19” were found to have been transmitted in mosques. Pakistan did not shutter mosques during the first wave of the pandemic either, said Ashrafi, and urged the public to not believe any unsubstantiated rumors.
The special assistant said all congregants should fully observe all precautionary measures to protect themselves against COVID-19, adding that the standard operating procedures issued by the government for mosques should be adhered to.
The distance between worshippers in mosques while offering prayers, as described by medical experts, fell under compulsion and necessity, he stressed, adding that there should be no doubt over the matter.