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f:681 -    Business of selling water
Country : Vijaywada,
Name : Muhammad Abdul Baqi
Question:     I want to start the business of water plant.  Is it permissible?  Please give me an early reply.
Answer:     Air and water is the basic necessity of every living creature.  As Allah Most High says in Surah Nisa:

But whoever will do that through transgression and injustice, We shall soon throw him into the Fire (of Hell) and that is very easy for Allah.  Surah Nisa (4:92)

A human being can remain alive without food for a couple of days, but cannot stay alive without water.  For this reason, the Shariah has kept the water of lakes, rivers, streams, wells, etc. permissible for everybody.  Nobody has the right to stop it and this cannot be the property of any one person.  However, when water from these sources is transferred into containers of any kind, then it is considered the property of a single human.  That person has the right to give it free or to sell it.  As per the Shariah, it buying and selling is allowed.  If the water is not collected in any form like containers, etc. and is in say a well, then stopping people from using it is not allowed.  As given in Jame' Tirmidhi:

Translation:  It is narrated on the authority of Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (May Allah be well pleased with him) that the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said: Surplus water should not be stopped.  As given in Durre Mukhtaar, Vol. 4, Pg No. 123.

Also, in mineral water plants, water is treated with chemicals etc. to make it purer and as such water plant business is permissible and allowed.

And Allah Most High knows best.

Mufti Syed Ziauddin Naqshbandi Qadri,

[Professor, Islamic Law, Jamia Nizamia,
Founder-Director, Abul Hasanaat Islamic Research Center]
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