The head of the Fatwa council, Mufti Ghinadin, on the day of the Russian parliamentary elections, called upon all Muslims to display their ‘patriotism’ and fulfil their “religious obligation”. This was in the case where the Council for giving Fatwas in Russia webpage published the following: “The head of the Muslims in Russia reiterated in his speech that the great Deen of Tawheed has made the right of elections an obligation upon the believer as Allah Subhaanahu said in the Qur’an Al-Kareem:﴿أَطِيعُوا اللَّـهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَأُولِي الْأَمْرِ﴾ “Obey Allah and Obey the Messenger and those in authority” [An-Nisaa’: 59]. Meaning to obey those who you have placed to undertake actions for your sake”.
In addition to this Aayah not including within that which makes the election obligatory, the Mufti gave an erroneous interpretation of this Aayah in order to mislead the Muslims and make them incline towards supporting the actions of the government.
That is because the Aayah from Surah An-Nisaa’ says: ﴿يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَطِيعُوا اللَّـهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَأُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنكُمْ﴾ “O You who believe, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority from you” [An-Nisaa’: 59]. There is therefore a clear difference between the Aayah in full and what the head of the council for giving Fatwas quoted, in the case where he dropped the words “From you” which indicate that the ruler must be from the Muslims themselves and corresponding to that, must rule by the Deen of Islam.
Ibn Kathir mentioned the following in his Tafsir of this Aayah: Umm Al-Hussein related that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said in his farewell Khutbah (address): «وَلَوِ اسْتُعْمِلَ عَلَيْكُمْ عَبْدٌ يَقُودُكُمْ بِكِتَابِ اللهِ، اسْمَعُوا لَهُ وَأَطِيعُوا» “And if a slave is appointed over you (in a position authority), leading you by the Book of Allah, then you (must) hear and obey”. And Abdullah Ibn ‘Umar related that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said: «السَّمْعُ وَالطَّاعَةُ عَلَى الْمَرْءِ الْمُسْلِمِ فِيمَا أَحَبَّ وَكَرِهَ، مَا لَمْ يُؤْمَرْ بِمَعْصِيَةٍ، فَإِذَا أُمِرَ بِمَعْصِيَةٍ فَلَا سَمْعَ وَلَا طَاعَة» “Hearing and obeying is a duty upon the Muslim person in respect to that which he likes and dislikes, as long as he is not commanded with a sinful act of disobedience. So if he is commanded with a Ma’siyah (act of disobedience) then there is no hearing and no obeying” (Related by Al-Bukhari and Muslim).
This means that the Aayah is talking about the obligation of obeying the ruler within the limits set by Islam, whilst the Mufti is twisting the text and committing a clear Haram and act of misleading the Muslims for the sake of the established regime.
In the case where the Kuffar (disbelievers) appoint themselves as rulers for this world and give themselves with the right to make legislation, then this is understood by their Kufr (disbelief), however what can’t be understood is the behaviour of Muslims when they call for what the people legislate from their minds to be implemented.
﴿يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُقَدِّمُوا بَيْنَ يَدَيِ اللَّـهِ وَرَسُولِهِ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّـهَ إِنَّ اللَّـهَ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ﴾
“O you who believe! Do not put (yourselves) forward before Allah and His Messenger (SAW), and fear Allah. Verily! Allah is All-Hearing, All-Knowing” [Al-Hujuraat: 1].
Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir