Q: My mother has a friendship with a woman (just a normal friendship). So, sometimes, when I meet her, my mother expects me to shake hands, hug and kiss her, or at least one of the mentioned. I have actually been doing this for last several years. I also need to mention that she is not a mahram to me. In addition, she does not observe hijab in front of non-mahram males. Alhamdulillaah, since last year, I actively started learning my religion. I will be 20 years old next month (September), by miladi calendar. I need to mention that the friend of my mother is more than 35 years. Most likely, she is between 35 and 40. I heard or read somewhere that shaking hands with old women is permissible if there is no fear of fitnah. I can verify that I have no fear of desire or anything attracting when I meet her since she is and looks quite old and has a husband. Also, the same with hugging and kissing if I am not wrong. However, these are things I heard or probably read from an untrustworthy source.
And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.
Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)
This answer was collected from MuftiOnline.co.za, where the questions have been answered by Mufti Zakaria Makada (Hafizahullah), who is currently a senior lecturer in the science of Hadith and Fiqh at Madrasah Ta’leemuddeen, Isipingo Beach, South Africa.