Subject : Ruling on Wearing a Mask while in State of Ihram for Hajj or Umrah
Fatwa Number : 3762
Date : 11-04-2023
Classified : What is Forbidden while in Ihram
Fatwa Type : Search Fatawaa

Question :

Is it permissible for a person in state of Ihram for Hajj or Umrah to wear a mask? If not permissible, what is he/she liable for before Almighty Allah?

The Answer :

All perfect praise be to Allah the Lord of the Worlds. May Allah`s peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Mohammad and upon all his family and companions.

According to the general rule, it is forbidden for a woman to cover her face while it is allowed for a man to cover his face with that which isn`t considered stitched clothes. Narrated `Abdullah bin `Umar: A man said, "O Allah's Messenger (PBUH). What type of clothes should a Muhrim wear Allah's Messenger (PBUH) replied, 'Do not wear shirts, turbans trousers hooded cloaks or Khuffs (socks made from thick fabric or leather); but if someone cannot get sandals, then he can wear Khuffs after cutting them short below the ankles. Do not wear clothes touched by saffron or wars (two kinds of perfumes). A woman who is on pilgrimage must not be veiled, or wear gloves.” {Transmitted by Bukhari}.

An-Nawawi said in Matin Al-Edaah Fil Manasik, p.45: "Excluding the head, it is allowed to cover the face and the rest of the body with the Izar, which wraps around the waist covering the lower body, and the Rida, which is draped over the shoulders covering the upper body like a shawl. However, what is forbidden is wearing clothes, stitched or not, that fit the whole body or an organ."

For the man, wearing a mask while in the state of Ihram is one of the violations of Ihram (Ritual consecration) which obligate paying a ransom. This is because the mask is in the first place a piece of garment covering a part of the body. However, if the Saudi authorities compelled the pilgrims of Hajj or Umrah to wear the mask because of the epidemic and other excuses then it is lawful for the pilgrim-man or woman-to wear it and he/she isn`t considered sinful nor liable for any ransom. It is said in the Shafie book Shareh Al-Mokhadimah Al-Hadramiyah, p.66: "AL-Kurdi said: The restrictions of Ihram fall into four sections: First: what is allowed for a need and entails no sin or ransom, which is wearing trousers because the Izar was lost…..Also wearing clothes or perfume forgetfully, out of ignorance or under coercion."

In conclusion, if the person in the state of Ihram was compelled to wear the mask, then he/she isn`t considered sinful for that nor liable for ransom. Moreover, compliance with the instructions of the concerned authorities is better than violating them and exposing one`s life and others to the risk of infection and disease outbreaks in societies. And Allah the Almighty knows best.



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