Q: Amongst Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi Muslims in the west, there is the notion that brother in laws and sister in laws can mix or male and female cousins can mix so long as there is no fear of fitna and on the basis that senior Ulama, Tablighis and Mureeds of Shaykhs do so. Please explain fully why this understanding is incorrect?
A: Mixing freely has been condemned in the hadeeth which goes as: “The brother-in-law is death.” In other words. those people that you are quite familiar with, you should be more careful of them than those whom you are not at all familiar with because this type of familiarity brings easy access and that easy access is a stepping stone to other haraam.
And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.
Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)