Forms of Contemporary Gambling
Fatwa No: 375397

Question

Assalamualaikum. In one of your fatawa, [http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/index.php?page=showfatwa&Option=FatwaId&Id=99451], you mentioned that winning prize money without paying anything is permissible. But in another fatwa [http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/index.php?page=showfatwa&Option=FatwaId&Id=339982] , you kind of vaguely said , it is impermissible. [Although mentioned the majority view and Shaykh Uthaymeen's view only without saying what you follow.] . What is the correct opinion according to you ? Another question is, In my country , Bangladesh , there are many Engineering project shows are held where the main goal is to showcase the engineering project. The best project is given a prize money . Participants dont pay for the prize money. Is it halal? Also there are many programming contests online , where no money is needed for participation but they give winners prize money. Are they halal also?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

The subject of the first Fatwa is pertaining to winning prizes without contests. It is a gift from a given party (a third party) to a person, so it is permissible and it has nothing to do with gambling.

The second Fatwa is related to the subject of competitions in which there is compensation (prizes) by non-contestants. There is a difference of opinion about its permissibility in other than where there is an Islamic text that rules it permissible, which is in camel race, horse race, and throwing arrows.

We have mentioned the difference of opinion on its ruling and we favored the view that the competition on video games and the like is not permissible.

Therefore, the prizes that are given to the best engineering project without the entrepreneurs paying anything is permissible. However, the competitions in which the participants pay money are not permissible and are included in forbidden gambling.

Allah knows best.

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