I belong to hanafi madhab and would like to know how a women should cover herself.

My main concern is that i have heard form many people that covering the face and hands is not the requirement set by islam and that the face can be covered at ones will because mostly all attractions start from the face. However there is no punishment for not covering the face and hand. Is this true. Please give me a detailed reply on this topic. Another thing i wanted to know is that i have heard that according to the other imams(imam shafi etc) covering the face is a must. Please elobarate on this also.

Answer

Allah Ta?ala states in Surah Ahzaab, ?O Messenger of Allah, enjoin your wives and daughters and the women of the believers that they should let down (over their faces) a part of their outer garments.?

Explaining this verse, the author of Tafseer ibn-Kathir has mentioned a statement of Hadhrat Abdullah ibn Abbaas (Radhiallaahu Anhu) in which he says, ?Allah has enjoined the believing women that when they are constrained to go out of their homes, they should cover their faces with the sheets which they wear over their heads and expose only one eye in order to see their way.?

Allah Ta?ala has commanded the use of Jilbaabs. In Arabic, ?Jilbaab? means a large sheet which the women wear over their dresses. In the above quoted verse, the holy Qur?aan commands that just as women wears ?Jilbaab? over their dresses, they should also let a part of it fall over their faces.

It is not necessary for a woman to cover her hands and face when performing Salaat. There is a difference between Hijaab (area necessary to cover amongst strangers) and Awrah (area necessary to cover during Salaat).

and Allah Ta’ala Knows Best

Mufti Ebrahim Desai

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