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Is It Permissible To Remove Headstones From a Land I Purchased?

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

Answered by: Shaykh Ahmed bin Mohamed Umarji

Question:

I have recently secured planning permission to convert a small warehouse into two flats. There is a small piece of land outside the warehouse that I plan to use as a garden.

There are currently 3 or 4 headstones within that land. I believe this land was used as a burial ground some 100 years ago.  I plan to remove the headstones and tidy up the land. My query is:

  1. Is it ok to remove the headstones?
  2.  s it ok to allow the land to be used as a garden since the burials happened so long ago?
  3. Is there anything else I should be aware of?

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

Answer:

1. Headstones are categorized as permissible for the purpose of identification.1 They are not items that hold no religious significance and are permissible to remove.

2. Using the land as a garden will be permissible. As it is permitted to bury another person within the same grave, or even cultivate the land or build upon it after the body has decomposed

Only Allah knows best

Written by Shaykh Ahmed bin Mohamed Umarji

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

  1. Radd al-Muhtar, Page 237, Volume 2, Dar al-Fikr Beirut 1992

This answer was collected from DarulIftaBirmingham.co.uk, which is run under the supervision of Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah from the United Kingdom.

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