Q: Due to the lack of job opportunities, our state has established
a social fund.
This fund finances small projects for fresh graduates. I submitted my project which is a threshing-house as I have experience in this area. After discussing the project and conducting the feasibility study, approval was given and my papers were transferred to the bank to receive the money. Afterwards, I came to know that the process is just a loan which will be paid in full after 5 years with 9% interest. Some people said that this 9% is Riba (usury). Therefore, I did not want to take the money until I asked your Eminence. What is the ruling on this loan?
If the matter is as you have mentioned in the question, this act is not permissible because it is based on clear usury. Allah (Exalted be He) has forbidden usury and cursed the one who eats it, witnesses it and writes the contract for it. Therefore, you have to seek a lawful means to earn your provision. Allah (Exalted be He) says:
And whosoever fears Allâh and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty).
And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine.
(Part No. 13; Page No. 426)
May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.