Hunger strike until death because of injustice
Fatwa No: 81240

Question

I have a question to ask, and I would put an example for you kindly to answer it. For example, if somebody was UNFAIRLY jailed and he asks to be let free or he would go on strike on food to death. The person is a good businessman and he makes a lot of money when he works (adding to Islam strength). For him, a jail is end of life and he would like to seize any chance to get out. He thinks, they would let him free if he go on strike. But maybe he would die from the food strike. But also if he died, many people would know about the unfair justice of the court.
The question is: would his death be a suicide, a death for his rights or would it be shahada?
Thank you alot.

Answer

Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds; and blessings and peace be upon our Prophet Muhammad and upon all his Family and Companions. Allah (SWT) says: [O! you who believe! Eat not up your property among yourselves unjustly except it be a trade amongst you, by mutual consent. And do not kill yourselves (nor kill one another). Surely, Allâh is Most Merciful to you]. Salman (MAY ALLAH BE PLEASED WITH HIM) said to his brother ABU DARDA: "Your Lord has a right on you, your soul has a right on you, and your family has a right on you; so you should give the rights of all those who has a right on you." Abu Ad-Darda' came to the Prophet and inquired about it the Prophet said, "Salman has spoken the truth.". JUNDUB IBN ABDULLAH reported Prophet (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “There was a person before you, he had a wound, he took a knife and cut his hands, he died by the continuous bleeding, “Allah said: “My slave hurried to his life before me, so I forbade the paradise on him”. In the light of these texts, killing oneself is prohibited. One should be patient on unfairness of unjust people. Allah will increase his reward. If he died in this condition he would be martyr INSHA ALLAH. Defending one’s soul by legal ways is permissible. You may use all kinds of legal ways without committing any forbidden deeds. You may consult lawyers to raise your issue once again. Going on a strike by stopping from eating to gain your rights is permitted if there is no way except it. But you should not strike till your death because killing ourselves is prohibited in Islam. Allah Says (Interpretation of meaning): ": “ Do not kill yourselves, indeed He (Allah) is merciful for you”.[24:29] Dear brother, be patient on these problems, you know Prophet Yousuf had been imprisoned unjustly, he endured it. Allah Says (Interpretation of meaning): [Verily who bears from Allah and be patient, Allah will not waste the reward of well doers].[12:90] You are neither the first who has been treated unjustly nor you are the last. Do not lose hope of the mercy of Allah. Allah says (Interpretation of meaning): [And who despairs of the Mercy of his Lord except those who are astray?]15:56] Always try to be well doer, you would be near to mercy of Allah. Allah says (Interpretation of meaning): [ Verily the mercy of Allah is close to well doers].[7:56] Multiple your prayer and DU’A (Supplication), praise Allah that the cruelty does not prevent you from worshipping Allah. May Allah bless you. You are blessed any way, as in a sound Hadith, Prophet (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said:” If a person is on a journey or becomes ill, Allah will continue his reward of his acts, he was used to perform it while he was healthy and resident”. Suhaib reported that Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: “Strange are the ways of a believer for there is good in every affairs of his and this is not the case with anyone else except in the case of a believer for if he has an occasion to feel delight, he thanks (God), thus there is a good for him in it, and if he gets into trouble and shows resignation (and endures it patiently), there is a good for him in it”. Try hard to do good deeds. May Allah dispel your sorrows. This unfairness which you underwent will upgrade your position in the day of resurrection . Prophet (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: Abu Hurairah (May Allah bepleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said, "Do you know who is the bankrupt?'' They said: "The bankrupt among us is one who has neither money with him nor any property". He said, "The real bankrupt of my Ummah would be he who would come on the Day of Resurrection with Salat, Saum and Sadaqah (charity), (but he will find himself bankrupt on that day as he will have exhausted the good deeds) because he reviled others, brought calumny against others, unlawfully devoured the wealth of others, shed the blood of others and beat others; so his good deeds would be credited to the account of those (who suffered at his hand). If his good deeds fall short to clear the account, their sins would be entered in his account and he would be thrown in the (Hell) Fire". [Muslim] If you are oppressed, you will take from the good deeds of whoever oppressed you. Allah said in a Hadith Qudsi: “ Surely I will help you even though after a period”. Do not forget this life is a place of examination and it is a very short period. Be patient, fear Allah, and be content in what Allah has chosen for you. This may ease for you the way of paradise. We ask Allah to drive away your worries and grieves, and put all these trials in the record of your good deeds. Allah knows best.

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