Ruling on putting the deceased within a tin box to be moved to a far country
Q: An Iraqi brother died in a car accident. I think he was a righteous person, and Allah is sufficient for him. I do not commend and praise anyone in front of Allah. He wrote a will that he should be buried in this land, i.e., in
Actually, there is a Muslim graveyard beside those of
but it is separate from them. Yet, there arose two problems concerning his burial:1- The law of the land prescribes that the deceased is to be buried in the box, following all the terms as apply to
A contract, which lasts for twenty years, beginning from the burial of the deceased, is signed between the family of the deceased and the German municipality responsible for the graveyards. According to this contract, the bereaved family of the deceased is to pay 500 German Marks, i.e., the equivalent of 2500 U.S. Dollars in installments until the end of the term, i.e. Twenty years. At the end of this term, the family should renew the contract for another twenty years. In the case of non-renewal, the remains of the dead will be dug out, burnt, and the place will be cleaned for burying another dead according to the same conditions as before.2 - If the deceased brother had made his will without knowing all these regulations, should we not abide by his will and fly his body to a Muslim country, by way of honoring him and saving his body from all this hassle? (Part No. 7; Page No. 394) 3 - If we transfer his body to a Muslim country, it will be shipped in a tin box (a type of metal), according to the regulations followed in these countries (Europe) that ban shipping of corpses inside wood boxes. It should be known that the tin box is so firmly-secured in order to preserve the body from decomposition. If this box should be opened, it will result in health problems for those who will open it. This is what had already happened in some Arab countries, where the box was broken open resulting in the death of two people due to the bacteria coming out of it.It is worth mentioning that the body of the deceased here is washed and shrouded, according to the rules of the Shari`ah, before being put in this box.
If the situation is as you have mentioned, the deceased should be washed, shrouded, and Janazah (Funeral) Prayer should be offered to him. There is no sin in putting him within the mentioned tin box after that. He should be moved to the graveyards of Muslims in any Muslim country. There is no sin in placing him in the mentioned tin box without opening it.May Allah grant us success. May Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and his Companions!