Hajj Without A Mahram

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Mahmoodiyah



Respected Mufti Saheb

Please guide us on the following matter:  Zaid is going for Hajj with his wife.  He has an old age widowed mother in-law who wishes to join him with her other unmarried daughter who lives with her and serves her.  Both mother and daughter have as yet not performed their Fardh Hajj though they have the means to do so financially.  On reaching the Haramain they have made arrangements by way of separate rooms (son in-law and wife in one room and the mother and daughter will be in a separate room).  Question is that is it permissible for the mother in-law and her unmarried daughter to go with the son in-law as Mahram to perform their Fardh Hajj?

Your reply will be deeply appreciated.





الجواب حامدا و مصليا

Nabi SAW said, `It is not permissible for a Muslim woman to travel for 3 days or more without a Mahram or her husband. In some narrations the words are as follows, a woman should certainly not perform hajj without her Mahram (Hidayah). In a narration from Sahih Bukhari it says when Nabi SAW forbade the woman from travelling without their Mahram, then a Sahabi asked Nabi SAW `Oh Nabi of Allah my wife wants to go for hajj where as my name is written amongst those going in Jihad, Nabi SAW then ordered him to go for hajj with his wife. From this Hadith we gather that it won’t be correct for a woman to travel without a Mahram even if she is going for hajj.

The travel of hajj lasts for quite a while. Many a time we need help from each other. If a woman is travelling without her husband or Mahram she may be compelled to take assistance from a stranger whereby there may be close relations and touching of each others body parts which can be a cause of Fitnah. If she can not find any help she may fall into problems. During Tawaaf, pelting and slaughtering the woman needs the man’s assistance to complete these pillars in an orderly fashion. Nowadays there are huge crowds during the hajj period .People bump into each other all the time. Important items need to be bought, and at the airport etc one has to stand waiting while the other completes the necessary requirements. In this case for a man to travel alone he won’t be short of difficulties. So imagine how hard it will be for a woman travelling alone when she shouldn’t take help from a strange man. Therefore the law of the Shari’ah is that it is incorrect for a woman to perform hajj without her husband or Mahram. (Fataawaa Mahmoodiyah pg 177, 201 v3 & pg167 v9 & pg 166,172 v13)

If hajj becomes Fardh on a woman due to her high financial ability and she has no Mahram or husband, but from her close family there are a few women going for hajj with their husbands or Mahram and she is able to take help from these family women in all her difficulties faced during hajj, she is also certain that she wont need help from any strange man where by her body touches his or she has unceremonious conversations, in this case there Fuqahaa differ in whether is it permitted for her to perform only her Fardh hajj alone? According to Ahnaaf it still won’t be permissible for her to perform hajj without her husband or a Mahram. If she is unable to go for hajj with her husband or Mahram in her life time then she should make a bequest for her hajj to be performed for her. (Ad-Durrul Mukhtaar pg 157 v2)

According to Hanaabilah hajj will not be Fardh on that woman that does not have a husband or a Mahram to accompany her; because there is a Hadith in Daru Qutni that a woman should certainly not perform hajj without a Mahram. (Al Mughni Li Ibni Qudamah pg30 v5)

According to Imam Maalik and Shafi’ee a woman can perform her Fardh hajj only with pious and reliable women if she doesn’t have a Mahram, not Nafl Hajj. (Al Majmoo’ Sharhul Muhathab Lin Nawawi, pg 69 v7)

According to Ahnaaf if a woman is financially able to go for hajj then hajj becomes Fardh on her. However if she lives a long distance away from Makkah then her actual performance of hajj only becomes Waajib if she has a husband or a Mahram with her and if not she must make a bequest. (Ad Durrul Mukhtaar pg 158 v2, Fataawaa Rahimiyyah, pg 57, 108 Fataawaa Mahmoodiyah)

Nowadays travelling is different to before. It has become much easier. It is because of the large crowds that there is very little private time. It is easy for a healthy woman to mount and dismount a bus etc. In such circumstances some Hanafi Ulamaa have given permission for a woman to perform her Fardh hajj only without her husband or Mahram, if she is going with her close family women and their husbands.

So you can go for hajj with your mother and sister, only to perform your Fardh hajj, on condition that your sister’s husband is with.

And Allah Ta’ala knows best

Mufti Muhammad Ashraf

Darul Iftaa

Jameah Mahmoodiyah


18 February 2006

19 Muharram 1427

This answer was collected in 2012 from the website of Jameah Mahmoodiyah, South Africa. The original website no longer exists.

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