Q. “We in north America buy our food stuff, including meat, from a Muslim’s store. He tells us that the meat is duly slaughtered by a Muslim according to Shariah, but we do not know whether he is correct in his statement or not. Some people become suspicious about his statement or not. Some people become suspicious about his statement on the ground that they themselves have not seen the animal being slaughtered and the possibility cannot be ruled out that the seller is claiming the meat to be halal only to attract the customers who strictly follow Shariah.
1. There are several ways of purchasing gold and silver. One is that gold could be purchased in exchange for gold or silver in exchange for silver, e.g. a person purchases gold with a gold coin which he has in his possession or silver with a silver coin which he has in his possession. In other words, the item that is being purchased is of the same category as that with which it is being purchased. In such a case, two factors are wajib : (i) the gold or the silver on both sides will have to be equal, (ii) the transaction must be complete before the buyer and the seller can separate, there must be no outstanding amount. If they conduct this transaction contrary to any of these two factors, it will be interest. For example, if you purchase silver with a R1 coin (which is made of silver), you will have to purchase the silver that is equal in weight as that of the R1 coin. If it is more or less than the R1 coin, it will be interest.
1. When selling an item, it is wajib on the person to show all the defects that may be found in it. It is harâm to conceal the defects and to convince the person into buying such an item.
2. After purchasing an item, a person noticed a defect in it, e.g. a woman notices that a cloth has been eaten up, a shawl has some moths in it or she notices any other defect. She now has the choice of keeping the item as it is, or returning it to the seller. However, if she decides to keep it, she will have to pay the full price of the item. It is not permissible for her to reduce an amount from the total price as a compensation for the defect. But if the seller agrees to reduce the price because of the defect, it will be permissible for her to pay less.
1. A person purchases an item without having seen it. This transaction is valid. However, once he sees the item, he has the right to return it or keep it. This is irrespective of whether there is any defect in the item or not. Even if the item is exactly as he had envisaged it to be, he still has the right to return it or keep it.
2. A person sold an item without even looking at it. This person who sells the item does not have the right to take it back after he sees it. Only the buyer has the right of returning an item after seeing it.
1. At the time of purchasing an item, a person says: “I have the right to take or return this item within one day, two days or three days. If I wish, I will keep it, if not, I will return it to you.” This is permissible. He has the choice of returning the item within the period that he specifies or of keeping it.
1. It is permissible to purchase an item on credit. However, it is necessary to specify a period of time, i.e. you will pay the amount after 15 days, after one month or after four months – whatever the case may be. If a person does not specify any period but merely says: “I don’t have the money now, I will pay you later”, this has two aspects to it:
(i) He says: “I will purchase this on condition that I will pay you later.” In such a case the transaction will be invalid (faasid).
1. When purchasing dry groceries, seeds, etc. a person has the choice of purchasing it after having it properly weighed or he could say: “I am buying a certain amount of wheat for R1.” Alternatively, he could purchase it as it is (i.e. without having it weighed nor specifying any amount) and say: “I am buying this heap of wheat for R1.” No matter how much of wheat may be in that heap, all will belong to him (once he purchases it).