Public interest

(Part No. 16; Page No. 35)  Fatwa no. 20020 All praise be to Allah Alone, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger, and his family and Companions.The Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta’ reviewed the request presented to His Eminence the Grand Mufty from His Eminence the Judge of the Court of Al-Salil, Ibrahim ibn ‘Abdullah Al-Thamiry, no. 236/2/1318/1 on 27th Jumada II, 1418 A.H., which was forwarded by the General Secretariat of the Council of Senior Scholars, no. 3826 on 2nd Rajab, 1418 A.H. His Eminence asked that the request submitted by ‘Aly ibn Mubarak ibn Bady Al-Dawsary should be considered, in which he asked about relocating a Masjid (mosque) that he dedicated as a Waqf (endowment) to a better location, as the old Masjid is small and located in the middle of the donor’s farm. His Eminence mentions that the director of the Department of Awqaf and Masjids wrote a letter to him asking whether this was permissible.The Permanent Committee reviewed the request and read the report presented by the committee formed for the purpose. Included in the report was the following:"Your Eminence, the Judge of the Court of Al-Salil, - may Allah protect you and may the Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon you. (Part No. 16; Page No. 36) In reference to your letter to us, no. 138/1 on 5th Rabi‘ I, 1418 A.H. Regarding us coming out to the current location of the Masjid that was endowed to the citizens by ‘Aly ibn Mubarak ibn Bady, who now wants to relocate it to another place. We agree to the new location that he intends to move it to and it is shown in the attached sketch of the village of Al-Salil. The new location is more spacious, and in our opinion, the closer the Masjid is to the residential area, the better, as it will be able to serve many passing commuters and inhabitants of the area. But Allah (Glorified be He) knows best and the final decision is yours."The committee has reviewed the letter from the director of the Department of Awqaf, Masjids, Daw‘ah, and Guidance, which was submitted to His Eminence, the Judge of the Court of Al-Salil. The letter includes the following: "Attached are the papers regarding ‘Aly ibn Mubarak ibn Bady’s request about relocating a Masjid to the Al Bady District. The area of the new Masjid, which will be built with a generous donation from His Royal Highness, the Minister of the Interior, will be 20 × 12 meters in area. The current Masjid is small, only 3 × 5 meters, and it is in disrepair, with its roof touching that of one of the houses. It does not serve its required purpose and yet it cannot be extended, as there is not enough space and it has no title deed. The area needs it to be moved to a new location. (Part No. 16; Page No. 37) We therefore hope that you will consider this request in the light of the Shari‘ah (Islamic law), and tell us if this is permissible and what we should do with the old location, if its location becomes vacant and a new Masjid is built."

Having reviewed the Fatwa request, the committee’s answer is as follows: If the situation is as you mentioned, there is no prohibition against relocating the old Masjid to a new location, as this will serve the public interest, because the old Waqf Masjid is very small, it is about to fall down as mentioned, and it appears to be unused as its current location is in the middle of the farms, palm trees and the donor’s house and so people refrain from performing Salah (Prayer) in it. The new Masjid will be much larger and on the highway, so it will be able to serve the local inhabitants and those passing through. As for the location of the old Masjid, after transferring the Masjid to the new location, the value of the area of the old Masjid should be estimated by the judge and this amount put towards building the new Masjid. May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.