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Please differentiate between the ruling you’ve passed in the Caram Board scenario below and sporting tournaments and leagues that are run and have …

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Askimam.org

As Salaamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakaatuh respected Ml. Abrar Mirza and Mufti Ebrahim Desai,

Please differentiate between the ruling you’ve passed in the Caram Board scenario below and sporting tournaments and leagues that are run and have been run for generations by respected members of our communities in specifically, for generations. These soccer, cricket and other leagues and tournaments cost money to administer and consequently fees are levied on participating teams or individuals in order to supplement the funds sourced by the organizing bodies from elsewhere. Usually, at the end of the cricket or soccer season as an example, or perhaps at the end of the tournament, a celebratory function would be hosted where the participants that performed well are awarded trophies and other prizes etc. Does the ruling you’ve made apply equally to these leagues and tournaments or is it based on specific characteristics inherent in the Caram Board scenario?

I was recently involved in a cricket tournament where each participating club paid a fee. Clubs played against one another and the top 3 clubs were awarded prizes at the end of the tournament. Did the format of this cricket tournament contravene the injunctions of our Shariah?

Question

 

Is it permissible to have a  Caram Boad Tournament,which has a enterence fee of 20 pounds and the winner of the competition gets a prize of 200 pounds?

 

Answer

 

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful


Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

 

It is not permissible to have a tournament with an entrance fee and the winner collecting the money.  In a transaction, when one gives the money, he should know exactly what he is getting in return.  In the mentioned scenario, each person pays the twenty pounds entrance fee but no one knows whether he/she will get anything in return or not.  Such transactions where the outcome is unknown are known as containing gharar, which the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم has declared impermissible. 

 

وحدثنا أبو بكر بن أبى شيبة حدثنا عبد الله بن إدريس ويحيى بن سعيد وأبو أسامة عن عبيد الله ح وحدثنى زهير بن حربواللفظ له حدثنا يحيى بن سعيد عن عبيد الله حدثنى أبو الزناد عن الأعرج عن أبى هريرة قال نهى رسول اللهصلى الله عليه وسلمعن بيع الحصاة وعن بيع الغرر (صحيح مسلم، كتاب البيوع، باب بطلان بيع الحصاة والبيع: 2/2؛ كتب خانه)

The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم forbade…transactions involving gharar (Muslim)

 

Therefore, such a tournament with entrance fees, where one person wins the money and all others lose, is gambling and completely impermissible.  Allāh Ta’ālā says in the Qur’ān,

 

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِنَّمَا الْخَمْرُ وَالْمَيْسِرُ وَالْأَنْصَابُ وَالْأَزْلَامُ رِجْسٌ مِنْ عَمَلِ الشَّيْطَانِ فَاجْتَنِبُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ (المائدة: 90)

O you who believe, intoxicants, gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows are an abomination of Shaytān’s work, so stay away from it so that you may be successful (Qur’ān 5:90)

 

Simply changing the name of the gambling money and winnings to “entrance fees” and “prize” will not change the ruling.

 

فإن شرطوا لذلك جعلاً فإن شرطوا الجعل من الجانبين فهو حرام وصورة ذلك: أن يقول الرجل لغيره تعال حتى نتسابق فإن سبق فرسكأعطيك كذا وإن سبق فرسيأعطيتني كذا وهذا هو القمار بعينه وهذا لأن القمار مشتق من القمر الذي يزداد وينقص سمي القمار قماراً لأن كل واحد من المقامرين ممن يجوز أن يذهب ماله إلى صاحبه أويستفيد مال صاحبه فيزداد مال كل واحد منهما مرة وينتقص أخرى فإذا كان المال مشروطاً من الجانبين كان قماراً والقمار حرام ولأن فيه تعليق تمليك المال بالخطر وإنه لا يجوز

(المحيط البرهاني، كتاب الكراهية والاستحسان، الفصل السابع: 8/14؛ إدارة)

 

والقمار حرام بالإجماع وبنص التنزيل

(المرجع السابق: 8/15)

 

وسمي القمار قمارا لأن كل واحد من المقامرين ممن يجوز أن يذهب ماله إلى صاحبه ويجوز أن يستفيد مال صاحبه وهو حرام بالنص

Answer

This answer was collected from Askimam.org, which is operated under the supervision of Mufti Ebrahim Desai from South Africa.

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