Fatwa: # 24287
Category: Misc. Fiqh
Country: Pakistan
Date: 6th February 2013


Is it permissible to build mausoleums over the graves of pious people?


Asalam Alikum,

My question to you is, whether it is permissible in Islam to build shrines, mausoleums or dargahs around the graves of pious people or people that are considered pious? Any references to the Quran and Hadith will be highly appreciated.

The question is regarding the constructions of such buildings only and not the practices that go on at such places, many of which do fall under biddah and shirk.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

As-salāmu ʿalaykum wa-raḥmatullāhi wa-barakātuh

It is not permissible to construct mausoleums and shrines over the graves of pious people.

In a Ḥadīth narrated by Imām Muslim, Jābir ibn ʿAbdillah Raḍi Allāhu ʿanhu says:

«نَهَى رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أَنْ يُجَصَّصَ الْقَبْرُ، وَأَنْ يُقْعَدَ عَلَيْهِ، وَأَنْ يُبْنَى عَلَيْهِ»

“The Prophet of Allah, Ṣallallāhu ʿalaihi wa Sallam, forbade that a grave be plastered, and that a grave be sat on, and that a grave be built on.” (Saḥiḥ Muslim, no. 970)

In another Ḥadīth narrated by Imām Muslim, Abu al-Hayyāj al-Asadi says:

قَالَ لِي عَلِيُّ بْنُ أَبِي طَالِبٍ: أَلَا أَبْعَثُكَ عَلَى مَا بَعَثَنِي عَلَيْهِ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ؟ «أَنْ لَا تَدَعَ تِمْثَالًا إِلَّا طَمَسْتَهُ وَلَا قَبْرًا مُشْرِفًا إِلَّا سَوَّيْتَهُ»

ʿAli ibn Abu Ṭālib Radi Allāhu ʿanhu said to me, “Shall I not sent you on (such a task) which the Prophet of Allah Ṣallallāhu ʿalaihi wa Sallam sent me, (which is) that you efface every picture of an animate object and that you level every raised grave?” (Saḥiḥ Muslim, no. 969)

The commentators of Ḥadīth mention that ‘raised grave’ in this Ḥadīth refers to that grave upon which structures are built.[1]

 And Allah Taʿālā Knows Best

Mahmood Patel
Student, Darul Iftaa
Azaadville, South Africa

Checked and Approved by
Mufti Ebrahim Desai







The Darul Iftaa has received queries regarding Mufti Ebrahim Desai Saheb’s teaching and affiliation with Madrassah In’aamiyya, Camperdown. The confusion is probably due to the previous Fatawaa and Google searches of Mufti Ebrahim Desai Saheb issued under the name of Darul Iftaa, Madrassah In’aamiyyah, Camperdown.


Mufti Ebrahim Desai Saheb has resigned from Madrassah In’aamiyya two years ago and has no affiliation with Madrassah In’aamiyya, Camperdown.


Mufti Saheb has established the Darul Iftaa in Durban that facilitates for post-Ulama courses and training Mufti’s. He teaches Hadeeth at Darul Uloom Nu’maniyyah.


Email: darululoomnumaniyyah@gmail.com or




[1] قلنا: المراد بذلك قبور المشركين التي كانوا يبنون عليها الأنصاب والأبنية، فأراد أن يزيل ذلك لتزول آثار الشرك. (التجريد للقدوري (3/ 1073))

وقال ابن الجوزي في "التحقيق ": «وهذا محمول على ما كانوا يفعلونه من تعلية القبور بالبناء الحسن العالي». (شرح أبي داود للعيني (6/ 174)) (وهكذا في نصب الراية للزيلعي (2/ 305))

فهو على ما كانوا يفعلونه من تعلية القبور بالبناء الحسن العالي. (فتح القدير (2/ 141))

قُلْنَا: هَذَا مَحْمُول على مَا كَانُوا يَفْعَلُونَهُ فِي تعلية الْقُبُور بِالْبِنَاءِ المستحسنِ العالي. (تنقيح التحقيق للذهبي (1/ 318))

هُوَ الَّذِي بُنِيَ عَلَيْهِ حَتَّى ارْتَفَعَ. (مرقاة المفاتيح شرح مشكاة المصابيح (3/ 1216))

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