Prohibition on receiving payment for reading the Holy Qur’aan

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As-Salaamu-Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
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In many Muslim countries we see that readers are hired to read the Qur’aan. Is it permissible for the reader to accept payment for his reading? Is the one who gives him payment for that sinning?.
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Praise be to Allaah.

Reading Qur’aan is an act of worship, pure and simple, an act by means of which a person seeks to draw close to his Lord. The basic principle concerning this and similar acts that are only worship is that the Muslim does them seeking thereby the pleasure of Allaah and seeking the reward that is with Him, and not to seek reward or appreciation from any other person. Hence it was unknown among the righteous salaf to hire people to read the Qur’aan for the dead or on weddings or at parties. There is no report from any of the imams of Islam that they enjoined such a thing or allowed it. Neither it is known that any of them accepted payment for reading Qur’aan. Rather they would read it in the hope of attaining that which is with Allaah, may He be glorified. The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allaah be upon him) commanded the one who reads the Qur’aan to ask of Allaah thereby, and he warned against seeking anything from people. Al-Tirmidhi narrated in his Sunan from ‘Imraan ibn Husayn that he passed by a reader who was reading the Qur'aan, then he asked (for something). He said Inna Lillaahi wa inna ilayhi raaji’oon (verily to Allaah we belong and to Him is our return -- said when faced with calamity), and then he said: I heard the Messenger of Allaah (blessings and peace of Allaah be upon him) say: “Whoever reads the Qur'aan, let him ask of Allaah thereby, for there will come people who will read the Qur'aan and ask of people thereby.” 

As for accepting payment for teaching it, or performing ruqyah in which the Qur’aan is recited, and other things in which the benefit goes to someone other than the reader, the saheeh hadeeths indicate that it is permissible, because of the hadeeth of Abu Sa’eed who accepted a flock of sheep as payment for performing ruqyah for the man who had been stung by a scorpion, and he recited Soorat al-Faatihah for him as a ruqyah; and the hadeeth of Sahl about when the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allaah be upon him) gave a woman in marriage to a man in return for his teaching her what he had memorised of the Qur'aan. So the one who accepts payment just for reading or hires a group of people to read the Qur'aan is going against the Sunnah and against what the righteous salaf (may Allaah be pleased with them all) were agreed upon. 

And Allaah is the source of strength. May Allaah sent blessings upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and Companions. End quote 

Standing Committee For Academic Research and Issuing Fatwas 

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah's Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

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