Delaying a burial due to Coronavirus
Is it permissible to delay a funeral of a person infected with Coronavirus (Covid-19) due to family members being in isolation?
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بسم الله الرحمن الرحیم
Islam has emphasised on burying the deceased as soon as possible. The Prophet ﷺ said,
أسرعوا بالجنازة، فإن تك صالحة فخير تقدمونها، وإن يك سوى ذلك فشر تضعونه عن رقابكم
“Hurry up with the dead body for if it was righteous, you are forwarding it to good; and if it was otherwise, then you are putting off an evil thing from your necks” (Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī, 1315).
There are many other ḥadīths in this regard which we have outlined in an earlier answer.
Therefore, the burial should not be delayed. If the number of deaths increases due to this virus, delaying burials by several days can create many additional difficulties and complications. We recognise this would be extremely difficult for the family members, however, they should exercise patience and make intention of reward. May Allah Almighty protect us all.
Allah know best
20 Rajab 1441 / 15 March 2020
Approved by: Mufti Shabbir Ahmad and Mufti Muhammad Tahir