I am maintaining an account with Meezan Bank in Pakistan. Meezan Bank claims to be the first non-ribaa bank in Pakistan. It also has some prominent personalities on its Shariah board which monitors and guides its activities to ensure that all transactions are riba-free. But, sometime ago I was told by a Mufti saheb that it is not a riba-free as claimed and I should not utilise the profit which is added to my account at the month ends. I wonder if you could kindly advise whether or not I could consider the profit given by Meezan bank as Halal. I am totally confused as there appears to be no channel of investment left where a Muslim could consider as Halal, particularly in a Bank which claims to be the only true Islamic bank in the country. I shall be grateful for a fatwa in respect of Meezan Bank. Jazakumullah.
In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatoh
We cannot comment on the Shariah compliancy of Meezan Bank until we have studied their contracts. You state that some prominent personalities are on its Shariah Board. You should firstly understand that prominent personalities being on the Shariah Board does not necessary mean that the bank is Shariah compliant. One should not be deceived by the personalities and take it for granted that the bank is fully Shariah compliant. Always verify the contracts with reliable Ulama who have knowledge and expertise into reading such contracts.
That there are two important elements that relate to the Shariah compliancy of a bank. A) Contracts B) Procedures. If we do accept that the contracts of a Bank is fully Shariah compliant while the necessary procedures are not carried out, the entire transaction will be rendered null and void. Therefore, apart from the Shariah Board a full time Shariah expert has to be present to monitor the deals that the bank enters into.
And Allah knows best
Muhammed Zakariyya Desai,
Checked and Approved by:
Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa, Madrassah In’aamiyyah