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f:683 -    Giving oath through SMS
Country : Hyderabad, India,
Name : Muhammad Aqeel
Question:     People give us an oath through SMS that if you have balance, you should send this message to 10 or so persons and you will receive a good news.  Is this a valid oath and do we have to perform expiation for it?
Answer:     If you have taken an oath, then in case you didn’t fulfill the oath, you have to perform the expiation (Kaffara).  If you take an oath to do something, but don’t do it or take an oath not to do something and end up doing it, then as per the Shariah, expiation is necessary.

If someone takes an oath to commit a sin, any sin, then it is compulsory to break the oath and give the expiation.

As per the Shariah, the "Kaffara" of an oath is to free a slave, to feed 10 poor people 2 times or giving the equivalent amount of a day's food to 10 poor people or giving a moderate quality cloth good enough to cover the body to 10 people.  If a person cannot do all this, then that person should fast for 3 consecutive days.  If even during the 3 days of fasting, that person gets money from somewhere or has a strong possibility of getting money from somewhere, then any one of what is mentioned above is compulsory (Wajib ) on that person.  As given in Durre Mukhtaar, ‘Ala Haashiya Radd Ul Muhtaar, Kitab Ul Iman, Vol. 3, Pg No. 66/67 and in Vol. 2, Pg No. 598.

If you have taken any oath, then only someone telling you that you are an oath does not constitute an oath.  Thus, neither is fulfilling that oath is binding on you and neither is there any expiation.

And Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala) knows best.

Mufti Syed Ziauddin Naqshbandi Qadri

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