The Ayah: 'And when the female infant buried alive shall be questioned'

Q: Allah (Exalted be He) says (the meanings of which are translated as): And when the female (infant) buried alive (as the pagan Arabs used to do) is questioned: What is the linguistic and Shar`y (Islamic legal) meaning of Wa'd? May Allah reward you with the best.

A: Wa'd is burying alive a female infant. The Ayah (Qur'anic verse) mentioned in the question refers to what the pagan Arabs (Part No. 3; Page No. 181) of Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic time of ignorance) used to do by burying their female infants alive because of their hatred of girls. Thus, on the Day of Resurrection, the female infant buried alive will be questioned about the fault she did to be killed. This is a way of threatening the murderer, for if the aggrieved person is asked, what can the aggressor expect? It is worth mentioning that according to another Qira'ah (recitation style) this Ayah can also mean: "And when the female infant buried alive shall ask," which means she will demand to avenge herself on the killer.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.