Merchants of the shops in the city of Qadarif organized a strike on Thursday, 6th of September 2018 where they shut their businesses as a protest against the increase on taxes which reached triple the amount originally taken from them in the past. The question is: Is it Islamically legal to take taxes from merchants against their businesses, let alone to increase it?!
The answer to this question is explained through what the Rasuul ﷺ did and said. It is incumbent to know very well, that the Rasuul ﷺ never imposed upon the Muslims; whether they were merchants or not, taxes or surcharges as they were not imposed by the Sharia. Even though the state was in dire need of the money, he ﷺ rather used to urge the Muslims to give in charity if they are able to, and he ﷺ even ordered that no money is to be taken from the Muslims without any Sharia reason. He ﷺ insisted on the matter by saying: «لا يَحِلُّ مَالُ امْرِئٍ إِلا بِطِيبِ نَفْسٍ مِنْهُ» “No money from a person is Halal unless given by him from his own goodwill”, and he ﷺ said: «كُلُّ الْمُسْلِمِ عَلَى الْمُسْلِمِ حَرَامٌ دَمُهُ وَمَالُهُ وَعِرْضُهُ» “Every Muslim’s blood, property and honor are unlawful to be violated by another Muslim”.
Imposing taxes on the merchants, goods, services, and others are merely an imitation of the disbelieving West, who took on greedy and feeble Capitalistic legislations and disobeyed the orders of Allah (swt) Who ordered us to follow our Sharia from His Holy Book and the Sunnah of His Rasuul ﷺ. Allah (swt) says: فَلا وَرَبِّكَ لا يُؤْمِنُونَ حَتَّى يُحَكِّمُوكَ فِيمَا شَجَرَ بَيْنَهُمْ ثُمَّ لا يَجِدُوا فِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ حَرَجًا مِمَّا قَضَيْتَ وَيُسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا “But no, by your Lord, they will not [truly] believe until they make you, [O Muhammad], judge concerning that over which they dispute among themselves and then find within themselves no discomfort from what you have judged and submit in [full, willing] submission.” [An-Nisa: 65], and He (swt) says: وَمَا كَانَ لِمُؤْمِنٍ وَلا مُؤْمِنَةٍ إِذَا قَضَى اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ أَمْرًا أَنْ يَكُونَ لَهُمُ الْخِيَرَةُ مِنْ أَمْرِهِمْ وَمَنْ يَعْصِ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ فَقَدْ ضَلَّ ضَلالاً مُبِينًا “It is not for a believing man or a believing woman, when Allah and His Messenger have decided a matter, that they should [thereafter] have any choice about their affair. And whoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger has certainly strayed into clear error.” [Al-Ahzab: 36].
In addition to the impermissibility of imposing taxes, it leads to other impermissible acts. For example, imposing taxes on the merchants pushes them to increase the prices of the products thus making them expensive for the people. The Rasuul ﷺ forbid the intervention of whoever it may be in the prices on the Muslims in order to make them more expensive for them, as he ﷺ promised them Jahannam (we seek refuge in Allah from this). Imam Ahmad narrated in his book that the Rasuul ﷺ said: «مَنْ دَخَلَ فِي شَيْءٍ مِنْ أَسْعَارِ الْمُسْلِمِينَ لِيُغْلِيَهُ عَلَيْهِمْ فَإِنَّ حَقًّا عَلَى اللَّهِ تَبَارَكَ وَتَعَالَى أَنْ يُقْعِدَهُ بِعُظْمٍ مِنْ النَّارِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ» “Whoever increases the prices on the Muslims in order to make them expensive, Allah (swt) will indeed secure his seat in the Hellfire on Judgment Day.”
The one who allow these systems on the Muslim lands, inclusive Sudan, which impose these forbidden taxes even though the country is visibly and implicitly rich, have left the Islamic system. They followed the path of the disbelieving colonialist West and are willingly and forcefully taking on their systems and laws. They are also fighting the laws of Islam and those who are working relentlessly to bring back the ruling with what Allah (swt) revealed. Therefore, it became an obligation upon the Ummah to work with those who are working already in order to bring back the ruling with Islam, so that the people can live under the shade of its justice and mercy, under the protective shade of the second Khilafah Rashidah state upon the method of the Prophet, as it guarantees the pleasing of Allah, Lord of all worlds, and it is their savior from injustice and tyrants.
Ibrahim Othman (Abu Khalil)
Official Spokesperson of Hizb ut Tahrir in Wilayah Sudan
Thursday, 26th Dhul Hijjah 1439 AH
No: HTS 68/1439