Women and Islam
Qurbani: A privilege, not a burden
The principle observances of Islam apply to men and women in equal terms. The obligatory sacrifice (Qurbani) is one such observance that is not only symbolic of a believer’s complete submission to Allah Almighty, but is also a practical instrument to support the less fortunate. If a person, man or woman, meets the prerequisites, giving Qurbani becomes a binding duty (Wajib).
The Beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم said: No action of a human, on 10 Dhul Hijjah, is dearer to Allah Almighty than performing Qurbani. The [slaughtered] animal will come on the Day of Judgment with its horns, hair, and hooves. The sacrifice is accepted by Allah Almighty before [the animal’s] blood reaches the ground. Therefore, do it with a happy heart, (Tirmizi, vol. 3, p. 162, Hadith 1498).
Mufti Ahmad Yar Khan Na’eemi رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَلَيْه explains that ‘[typically] actions are accepted after they are performed, but Qurbani is accepted before being performed. Therefore, do not perform it while considering it useless or with trepidation; do not try to employ logic everywhere, (Mirat Al-Manajih, vol. 2, p. 375).
Qurbani becomes obligatory if a person possesses either one of the following:
* 7.5 Tolas of gold.
* 52.5 Tolas of silver.
* Cash equivalent to the value of 52.5 Tolas of silver.
* Trade goods which reach the value of 52.5 Tolas of silver.
* Non-essential belongings with the value equivalent to the value of 52.5 Tolas of silver
* A combination of the above that equates to the value of 52.5 Tolas of silver, (Fatawa Hindiyyah, vol. 5, p. 292, summarised).
Unlike Zakat, the assets for Qurbani to be obligatory do not have to be productive assets (Mal-e-Naami) or trade goods and stock, (Fatawa Razawiyyah, vol. 10, p. 294). These may include:
* Collections of unused books.
* Clothes and shoes beyond one’s essential needs.
* Unused watches and non-prescription glasses.
If all of these have a combined value equal to or greater than the value of 52.5 Tolas of silver, and one is not in debt, Qurbani will become binding (Wajib) as soon as the Day of Qurbani arrives.
Unfortunately, many women neglect this duty either knowingly or in ignorance, thinking that because they do not work, they are excused from giving Qurbani. Such women should be mindful of Allah Almighty and the consequences of neglecting our duties. If Allah Almighty has given you the ability to perform Qurbani by granting you wealth in the form of jewellery, then you must give Qurbani.
Ask yourself: why do you hesitate when it comes to giving Qurbani but spend without a second thought on expensive clothes and countless material wonts. Remember, Satan will attempt to stop you, but do not fall for his deceit; اِنْ شَــآءَالـلّٰـه, performing Qurbani will not reduce your wealth but be a means for it to increase manifold.
Qurbani is an individual duty; if several members of the household are eligible to give it, then it is not enough for a one person, such as the husband, to give it. Rather, each individual upon whom Qurbani is necessary (Wajib) must give a separate Qurbani. Each person does not need to give a full animal; they can contribute a share to a larger animal, and this will fulfil the requirement of Qurbani.
 Qurbani: to sacrifice a specific animal during specific days with the intention of reward, (Bahar-e-Shari’at, vol. 3, p. 327).
 10 Dhul Hijjah.