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Developing of Built Environment in the Muslim World By Ainul Jaria Maidin1 email@example.com & Sharifah Nadiah Syed Ahmad2 Abstract Islam encourages sustainable development for the Muslims in every aspect of life. Muslims should envision the promotion of a better quality of life for the Ummah including protection of every living being, and preservation of natural resources through the development of just, moral, creative, spiritual, economically vibrant, caring, diverse and cohesive society characterized by high productivity. The participatory role of man in democratic processes, and living in harmony within the limits of the carrying capacity of the nature requires man to promote development, growth and prohibit destruction. The goal of Islam is one of sustainable development for the sake of achieving mardatillah (pleasure of Allah (SWT)) without sacrificing the right to promote reformation and transformation in accordance with the needs of the society and advancement of technology. However, all development activities must be carried out in accordance with the rules and controlled by the government. The Qur’an pronounces that it was revealed to reform human conditions. Despite accepting the pre-Islamic customs and practices of Muslims, Islam has rejected customs which were harmful to the society and development to prevent harm and oppressiveness which is against Islamic fundamentals. Governments are given the rights to exercise their power of reasoning (Ijtihad) to develop new rules and regulations based on the Qur’an and Sunnah of the Prophet (SAW). Rules are an important tool for promoting the orderly administration of any civilized society. Most Muslim nations have not managed to fully develop their legal system based on the Qur’an and Sunnah except in areas of personal law, finance and criminal law. Majority Muslim nation continued to implement the western colonial law even after achieving independence. This paper seeks to identify the principles from the Qur’an and Sunnah that can be developed to provide regulation of the construction and maintenance of roads in the Muslim world. Keywords: roads maintenance, sustainable development, maqasid syari’ah, marsalih mursalah I. Introduction Roads, highways, streets, footpath, and lanes are an important means of creating right of way for men’s daily life as without right of way, it would be impossible for man to travel from one place to the other. All legal systems specifically provides for the right of way as this is an important right. Infact, the State has a right to impose limitations on private landowners in order to create right of way for the neighbours or anyone else if it’s expedient and necessary. Similarly, land ownership in a Muslim society is accompanied by an obligation to consider and give certain rights to neighboring landowners. Among the specific rights guaranteed by the Shari‘ah are the rights to privacy, right of preemption, and easement. Easement is an important right for landowners especially those landlocked and not able to access the public terminal. Easement in Arabic literary means Elbowing. It denotes the reduction of a property owner’s rights or benefits for the purpose of benefiting another neighboring property or properties. 3 Example of easements
Assoc Professor, Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyyah of Laws, International Islamic University Malaysia. Corresponding author 2 Postgraduate Candidate, 2010, Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyyah of Laws, International Islamic University Malaysia 3 Abu Zahra (1963) Al Milkiah wa Nazariat Al Agd fi Al Shariah Al Islamiah , Cairo, Egypt: Dar Al Fikr Al-Araba cited in Akbar J. (1984) Responsibility in the Traditional Muslim Built Environment , PhD dissertation submitted to
Cambridge. 4 Allah (SWT) in Surah Al Imran verse 104 says. you either enjoin good and forbid evil and catch hold of the hand of the oppressor and persuade him to act justly and stick to the truth.e. Shari’ah is more emphatic on the prevention of evil. A right of way is a path that anyone has the legal right to use on foot. These are all means of right of way and assume an important role in people’s lives in a way that not many have realized. roads. 4 Sunan Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi. When there is a plurality of conflicting interests and none appears to be clearly preferable. Easement is allowed in public properties because of collective ownership and in private properties because of adjoining or topological nature of the property. And it is they who are the successful. However. Massachussets. Easements are specific to immovable property. 2 . enjoining Al-Ma`ruf (i. streets or lanes. The land taken for the creation of right of way can be constructed into highways. The creation of right of way is a unilateral act and can be imposed on the landowners whose land is acquired for the purposes of creating the right of way that could be used as public or private right of way. "Let there arise out of you a group of people inviting to all that is good (Islam). This means concessions that are granted in the sphere of ibadat may be secondary to the survival of an individual but it becomes a matter of primary interest for the community as a whole. Easement always involves the loss of some rights by the owner of the property where easement is created (servient tenement) and some benefits for the owner (dominant tenement) to serve the needs of the neighboring property. "Nay. In the event of a conflict arising between the various classes of interest. Allah will involve the hearts of some of you with the hearts of others and will curse you as He had cursed them". The government is at times called to create right of way for the public or private individuals where negotiations for creation of easement fails. Creation of right of way is essential as it concerns the interest of the public at large. registered and gives rise to contractual obligations.43.rights also include the need for properties on lower elevations to allow properties on higher elevations to drain their rain and waste water through their property or for a house situated in the midst of other houses usually referred as landlocked to be provided access. p. Land on which easement rights are granted can be used as private right of way without governmental interference. or.'' The State can acquire private land for creation of right of way for the public despite such act depriving or limiting the rights of the landowners. It connects one place to another where daily routines are carried out and also to public terminal such as train station. by Allah. Islam permits such act as its essential to meet the needs of the public interest. Easement rights created between private landowners can be sealed as contract. and sometimes using other modes of transport. as can be seen in the hadith where the Prophet (SAW) has reported to have said. and seashore. MIT. all that Islam orders one to do) and forbidding Al-Munkar (Disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden). the lesser interest amongst these can be sacrificed to afford protection to a higher interest. then prevention of evil takes priority over the realisation of benefit. are mandatory on the eased property and cannot be abandoned. main roads.
or pushchair. Showing That He Is One. so Allah (SWT) created gaps passes in the mountains so that people may travel from here to there. So He says: ‘…that they may be guided. This is established in a Hadith narrated by Abu Huraira which displays the value of street and the importance to protect it from obstruction or harm. 8 Sahih Bukhari: Volume 3. cultural and employment as amplified in the verse quoted above ‘…that they may receive guidance.” They asked.”5 ‘Broad highways’. “They are the lowering of your gazes (on seeing what is illegal to look at). As we can see. a public right of way is part of the State’s highway and subject to the same protection in law as all other highways. In another Hadith regarding roads and narrated by Abu Said al-Khudri. Book 21: Anbiyaaa (The Prophets). providing they stay on the path and do not cause obstruction. country to country. he found a thorny branch of tree there and removed it. social. Book: Oppression.Legally. “There is no way out of it as these are our sitting places where we have talks. The above verse is proof that the importance and functions of roads are acknowledged in Islam and that every person must be granted the right of access to street. 6 “and We placed therein broad highways’ means. However there is no guarantee that the surface of the path will be suitable for pushchairs and wheelchairs especially if the way is not properly maintained and filled with potholes that may pose dangers to the users. refraining from harming people. Hadith No. “And We have set on the earth mountains standing firm. Prophet (SAW) was reported to have said to a group of men. Book: Oppressions. advocating good and forbidding evil. 3 . manual or powered wheelchair (mobility scooter) provided they follow the regulations for taking these vehicles on ordinary roads. Allah thanked him for that deed and forgave him. lest it should shake with them and We have made therein broad highways (between mountains) for them to pass through: that they may receive guidance. 645. Chapter: In Everything There Is A Sign of Him. There are no direct verse in the Quran which mentions the word ‘road’ but there is a mention of ‘highway’ in al-Anbiya’ verse 31 wherein Allah (SWT) says.”8 Islam recognizes the importance of street in society as it provides a means for people to go from one place to the other for various activities such as religious. roads or streets are means used to travel from one place to another by men. the mountains form barriers between one land and another. “What are the rights of ways?” He said. including trunk roads. returning greetings. mountains passes through which they may travel from region to region. “While a man was on the way. Islam provides that every single right of a person must be respected and protected. The legal right of individuals is to “pass and repass along the way”. “Beware! Avoid sitting on the roads (ways). “If you must sit there.’ .”7 Islam does not stop there but rather goes as deep as to prescribe adab or ethics while one is accessing the street. 7 Sahih Bukhari. as commented by Al-Khwarizmi in his Tafseer of Quran. The person can also take items such as a pram. or to consume refreshments.” Prophet said. The Prophet (SAW) said. Hadith No. then observe the rights of way.’ Highways. can stop to rest or admire the view. Volume 3.” The people said. 5 6 Translation by Yusuf Ali Tafseer of Quran. 652.
Yusuf al-Qaradhawy 12 commented that whenever Prophet is faced with matters related to the end result of an agriculture technique which Prophet (SAW) did not quite like. “You know better in your earthly matter” and Prophet (SAW) said that. Translation by Yusuf Ali. “Proclaim! (or Read) in the name of thy Lord and Cheriser. 12 Yusuf al-Qaradhawy. Islam has never promoted against development and improvement. This is proven through a series of verses which begins with the responsibility of Muslims to seek knowledge. Allah imposed the obligation for Muslims to learn in the holy Quran. In fact. verse 1 which means. etc. “Whatever the Muslims deem to be good is good in the eyes of Allah” 13 9 Translation by Yusuf Ali. it is He Who hath made the ships subject to you that they may sail through the sea by His command.s) through divine inspiration. Dr. Prophet (SAW) would just say to the Companion. 2009. 11 Surat Ibrahim: 32. 10 4 . and address Me no (further) on behalf of those who are in sin: for they are about to be overwhelmed (in the Flood). the verse also observes that the culture of sitting on the roads can cause obstruction and should be avoided. Kuala Lumpur: Alam Raya Enterprise. the first verse that was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (SAW) is al-Alaq. pp. Prof. again and again.”11 Referring to the practice of Prophet Muhammad (SAW). Allah (SWT) says. 119-20 13 Ibid. are only a click away from being displayed on the net. In Surat Hud.” 10 In another verse. backward. Surat Hud: 37. Allah (SWT) once again mentions of the gift of technology through the gift of ‘ships’ as vehicles to ‘sail through the sea’ which is another form of ‘right of way.However. The importance of maintaining the street in order to preserve the rights of access by the public is also emphasized in the Hadith. Translation by Yusuf Ali. Such sophistication and technology (as was then) is a glaring proof that Islam values development and promotes growth in tandem with development activities. These allegations are baseless and do not hold water. verse 37. and the rivers (also) hath He made subject to you. Allah (SWT) instilled the knowledge of the construction of an ark to Prophet Noah (a. together with many others. The ark was big and strongly built which construction would be impossible without divine intervention. Agama Dan Politik: Wawasan Ideal dan Menyanggah Kekeliruan Pemikiran Sekular-Libral. for instance. “It is Allah Who hath created the heavens and the earth and sendeth down rain from the skies and with it bringeth out fruits wherewith to feed you. These false allegations. Who created-” 9 Allah (SWT) encourages Muslims to acquire knowledge for the sake of development and improvement of the ummah which will subsequently lead to the expansion of Islam. oppressive. There are many biased accusations of Islam being anti-development. “But construct an Ark under Our eyes and Our inspiration. Allah (SWT) says.
sustenance and directing things towards their perfection. Published in: J. Hud:14. Kurshed. the Muslim jurists further interprets.Tawhid . spiritual and material development of the individual and society at large leading to maximum socio-economic welfare and the ultimate good of mankind. 16 Al-Imran. Allah (SWT) says. Tafsir that no one is excused of being ignorant of. The Islamic Foundation. This is due to the fact that Islam a complete religion with a complete set of rules and guidance in every aspect of life.15 II. Al-Maidah:44. 18 There are many other verses in the Holy Quran to illustrate this. The process is referred as ijma’ (unanimous consensus) and qiyas (opinion of the jurist) that is the secondary sources. Economic Development in an Islamic Framework. development is that all development activities must be carried out taking into consideration all the following elements. “He it is Who has sent down to thee the Book: in it are verses basic or fundamental (of established meaning). and sovereignty. Translation by Yusuf Ali. Al-Khwarizmi in his Tafseer of Quran. distinguishes. Seeking discord. and formulate or derive law which are not directly decreed in the texts.” Al-Khwarizmi further stated that The Messenger of Allah supplicated for the benefit of Ibn ‘Abbas. Development encompasses moral. Guided by these two sources. Zubair (2006): Sustainable development from an Islamic Perspective: meaning implications and policy concerns. . Book 3: Al-Imran (the Family of Imran). but no one knows its true meanings except Allah. and none will grasp the Message except men of understanding”16 Unlike other religions in this world. But those in whose hearts is perversity follow the part thereof that is not of well-established meaning.Tazkiyah – purification plus growth. and those who are firmly grounded in knowledge say: “We believe in it.According to Ahmad. . verse 7. Chapter Only Allah Knows the True Ta’wil of The Mustashabihat. Tafsir that the scholars know. Islam is the only faith that does not separate its religious beliefs from the administration of a state or government. and Tafsir that only Allah knows. or any deed for that matter. 1980.” 17 Interestingly. 83. “O Allah! Bestow on him knowledge in the religion and teach him the Ta’wil (interpretation).KAU: Islamic Economics 1 19 (2006): pp. “I am among those who are firmly grounded in its Ta’wil interpretation. Quoting Ibn ‘Abbas. . they are the foundation of the Book: others are not wellestablished meaning.18 14 15 Ahmad. such as Al-Imran:19.Khilafah – man’s role as God’s vicegerent on earth. Hasan. involving a confident and all-pervading participants of man and directed towards the maximization of human wellbeing in all its aspects and building the strength of the ummah so as enable man to discharge his role as Allah (SWT)’s Vicegerent on the earth.God‟s unity. 17 As Allah (SWT) says. the whole of it is from our Lord”. “Tafsir is of four types: Tafsir that the Arabs know in their language. Law Making Process Muslims derives laws and rules based on the primary sources prescribed in the Quran and Hadith. Development activities for a Muslim must be goal-oriented and a value-realizing activity. Al-Nahl:81 5 . the Federal Court of Malaysia in the case of Meor Atiqurrahman.” “Ibn Abi Najih said that Mujahid said that Ibn ‘Abbas said.14 a renowned Islamic scholar who explored the Islamic philosophy governing development. .Rububuyyah – divine arrangements for nourishment. and searching for its interpretation. 3-18. in its judgment acknowledged the fact that Islam ‘is not just a religion but a complete way of life’.
These are. It is important to keep in mind that Islam prescribes a complete way of life.”22 Shari‘ah.20 The ‘ulama’ have classified the entire range of masalih-cum-maqasid into three categories in a descending order of importance. purpose and benefit of its laws so much so that its text becomes characteristically goal-oriented. corruption and prejudice. and have chosen for you Islam as your religion. intellect and property. and then the embellishments or tahsiniyyat. For justice is also a maslahah and so is tahdhib al-fard.21 III. 21 22 Al-Maidah: 3. inheritance. in the negative sense. shows that every rule pertaining to the development or maintenance of the roads must be paralleled to the principles enunciated in Islam. by definition. Translation by Yusuf Ali.”19 Therefore. every single rule promulgated must be in line with the Shari‘ah or Islamic law which is based on the two types of sources. implement and enforce the rules for the benefit of man and the Universe. in order to prevent injustice. life. therefore. or hajiyyat. completed my favour upon you. and custody of children. “This day have I perfected your religion for you. Indeed. beginning with the essential masalih. verse 3. and have chosen for you Islam as your religion. or daruriyyat. evil conduct and crime which is reprimanded and made punishable. followed by the complementary benefits. Guidelines in Formulating Law on Construction and Maintenance of Roads Many have thought that Islamic law or the Shari‘ah focuses only on criminal punishments or sanctions like hudud and qisas. of the rationale. lineage. The essential interests are enumerated at five. Tracing the concept of roads in Islam. Translation by Yusuf Ali. essential to normal order in society as well as to the survival and spiritual well-being of individuals. so much so that their destruction and collapse will precipitate chaos and collapse of normal order in society. The underlying theme in virtually all the broad spectrum of the ahkam is realisation of benefit (maslahah) which is regarded as the summa of the maqasid. Islam acknowledges the importance of the State developing rules to ensure that the state’s affairs are administered and complies with the principles of Shari‘ah and the rights of the people are protected. many will be surprised to know that Islam is very concerned with the regulations pertaining to streets. completed my favour upon you. namely faith. The Qur’an expressly provides in numerous places and a variety of contexts. cause and benefit in the affirmative sense. Not only that. The International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT). every single act of human being is judged and will either carry legal accountability or spiritual accountability.“This day have I perfected your religion for you. 19 20 Al-Maidah. Allah (SWT) commands the authority to administer in accordance with the rules prescribed in the Qur’an and man as the Caliph is required to develop. governs every aspect of men’s life and that includes the construction and maintenance of roads essential to create right of way. 6 . Some might restrict Shari‘ah to personal laws such as matrimonial. Mohammad Hashim Kamali. (2009) Maqasid al Shariah: The Objectives of Islamic Law.
It is a duty of a Muslim to adhere to the laws set by the authority. Translation by Yusuf Ali. Having looked at the nature of the responsibility entrusted upon the authority. verily how excellent is the teaching which He giveth you! For Allah is He who heareth and seeth all things”23 The authority has vast powers to make and impose rules for the organized administration of the State. and most suitable for final determination”28 This is strengthened by a Hadith narrated by Abu Huraira in which Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said. “And if any fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed. they are (no better than) wrong-doers. at this point. verses 47. refer it to Allah and His Messenger if ye do believe in Allah and the Last Day: that is best. 23 24 An-Nisa’: 58. “I said to the Prophet (SAW). Translation by Yusuf Ali. 28 An-Nisa’:59. If ye differ in anything among yourselves. Translation by Yusuf Ali. in accordance with Shari‘ah which includes the laws and regulations on street. it is only fair that the authority be given full cooperation and obedience with regards to the laws and regulations they promulgate. will you not appoint me to a public office?” He stoked my shoulder with his hand and said. with the given power. There are several legal authorities to support this conception. Hadith No.”26 This is further endorsed by the Hadith narrated by Abu Dharr. Translation by Yusuf Ali. “Messenger of Allah. be assured that for some of their crimes it is Allah’s purpose to punish them. and on the Day of Judgment it is a cause of humiliation and repentance except for one who fulfils its obligations and (properly) discharges the duties attendant thereon”.“Allah doth command you render back your Trust to those to whom they are due. it is clear that the authority has the right to regulate. And truly most men are rebellious. they are (no better than) Unbelievers”25 Allah (SWT) cautioned the decision makers that.”24 In another verse.27 Thus. However. and when ye judge between people that ye judge with justice. “Abu Dharr. Similar meanings can be found in Al-Maidah. Islam imposes a strict restriction and enforces heavy responsibilities on the authority. which failure of compliance will lead to Allah’s (SWT) punishments. And if they turn away. 27 Sahih Bukhari and Muslim. but beware of them lest they beguile thee from any of that (teaching) which Allah hath sent down to thee. Al-Maidah: 45. 7 . Book 20. 25 Al-Maidah: 44. “And this (He commands): Judge thou between them by what Allah hath revealed and follow not their vain desires. Firstly. “O ye who believe! Obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those charged with authority among you. “If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed. Translation by Yusuf Ali. 4491. Allah (SWT) says. thou art week and authority is a trust. 26 Al-Maidah: 49. Allah (SWT) says.
“It is obligatory for you to listen to the ruler and obey him in adversity and prosperity. 33 Al-Maidah:2.. and good pleasure of their Lord. except that he is ordered to do a sinful thing. Help ye one another in righteousness and piety. responsibility. In a Hadith narrated by Ibn ‘Umar. to promulgate laws and regulations to safeguard the interest of the people. 4525. but help ye not one another in sin and rancor: fear Allah: for Allah is strict in punishment” 33 29 30 Sahih Bukhari and Muslim. Translation by Yusuf Ali. A life in moderation (wasatiah) is enjoined on Muslims. In one of the earliest revelation. and lower thy voice. including the subject matter of this paper. Moderation can be seen even in the way Allah (SWT) created all creatures as stated in Surah al-Hijr: 19.e.”29 Except if the laws and regulations decreed by the authority are against Allah’s (SWT) legal rulings. set thereon mountains firm and immovable. and even when another person is given (rather undue) preference over you. Islam demands the Muslims to lead a balanced life. Prophet (SAW) said. “And the earth We have spread out (like a carpet). This is mere basic guidelines and more details can be incorporated depending on the needs of a particular society. As Allah (SWT) says in Surah Luqman. Totally challenging development and being moderate are two different things. “O ye who believe! Violate not the sanctity of the Symbols of Allah. 32 Surat Luqman: 19. • Provisions Preventing Destruction to Natural Resources in Construction of Roads It is quite clear from the discussions above that Islam is a religion which supports development but at the same time demands moderation. in pleasure and displeasure. Hadith No. nor the people resorting to the Sacred House. The discussion below seeks to set out the salient features that need to be incorporated in developing legislation for regulating the construction and maintenance of roads. But when ye are clear of the Sacred Precincts and of pilgrim garb. “It is obligatory upon a Muslim that he should listen (to the ruler appointed over him) and obey him whether he likes it or not. 8 . 31 Al-Hijr:19.. “And be moderate in thy pace. and produced therein all kinds of things in due balance” 31 Islam is against extremism or excessiveness. Hadith No. 4533. the authority i. seeking of the bounty. If he is ordered to do a sinful act. Allah (SWT) says. Translation by Yusuf Ali. ye may hunt and let not the hatred of some people in (once) shutting you out of the Sacred Mosque lead you to transgression (and hostility on your part). nor of the Sacred Month. for the harshest of sounds without doubt is the braying of the ass”32 Islam avoids any act of transgressions or excessiveness as Allah (SWT) despises transgressions. a Muslim should neither listen to him nor should he obey his orders”30 Therefore. nor of the animals brought for sacrifice. government has the right which is in fact. Book 20. Book 20. Sahih Bukhari and Muslim. the street and which laws and regulations the people are obliged to abide with. Translation by Yusuf Ali.
Kent E. Mu’il Yusuf. ‘Umar bin ‘Abdul-‘Aziz. Thus. Massachusetts: Massachusetts Institute of Technology. could lead to adverse effects on public health or the environment. Allah (SWT) says. children and old people who do not participate in warfare. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Translation by Yusuf Ali. Islamic law: from historical foundations to contemporary practice. Strict observations are obligatory to preserve the environment. was discussed. 36 Al-Khwarizmi in his Tafseer of Quran. 2003. 39 Portney. Allah (SWT) reminded the believers. Translation by Yusuf Ali. Muqatil bin Hayyan and others. 2004. then such a road or factory should not be sacrificed. Taking Sustainable Cities Seriously. “When he turns his back his aim everywhere is to spread mischief through the earth and destroy crops and cattle. among others. commented that the term ‘transgression’ indicates.Applying the same principle. 39 As defined by the United Nations’ World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) which is better known as the Brundtland Commission. then the ‘prohibition’ shall prevail. But Allah loveth not mischief. p. 9 . theft (from the captured goods). If one examines closely. Chapter: The Prohibition of Mutilating the Dead and Stealing From the Captured Goods. these concepts of moderation and limitations set in development of roads despite acknowledging the importance of roads to human life. one can see that Islam observes the ‘carrying capacity’ of the earth which is the core element of sustainable development. burning down trees and killing animals without real benefit”37 The methodology of deriving the rulings or Usul fiqh is crucial in Islam. The NCE further added that “Sustainable development is premised on living within the earth’s means” 40 34 35 Al-Baqarah:205. ‘Izz al-Din. 8 40 Ibid. Book 2: Al-Baqarah (The Cow). ‘sustainable development’ is “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs” which conceptual definition is also shared with the National Commission on the Environment (NCE) of the United States. for Allah loveth not transgressors”35 Al-Khwarizmi in his Tafseer Quran36 by quoting Al-Hasan Al-Basri whose opinion is shared with Ibn ‘Abbas. the construction of roads. if a secondary public service. “includes mutilating of the dead. the construction of street cannot lead to excessive destruction to the environment and natural resources. Accordingly. it is just to suggest that there must be some limitations imposed on the development of roads.”34 Allah (SWT) despise destruction of the environment can be seen in His prohibition of destroying the surroundings and trees unnecessarily during war. 37 Ibid 38 Mawil Izzi Dien. killing women. killing priests and residents of houses of worship. The prohibition of destroying the environment is mentioned more than once in the holy Quran. “Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you but do not transgress limits.’ 38 Interestingly. First and foremost. it is apparent that construction of roads must be within the allowed parameters such as observing the contour and not to cut through hills unnecessarily if it can be avoided. there is a methodical maxim which carries the meaning that ‘whenever there is any contradiction between ‘prohibition’ and ‘allowance’. Under the rule of Usul fiqh. in providing examples on the application of the above maxim. Al-Baqarah: 190. such as the building of the road or factory.
DOT through the Reauthorization of TEA-2141 Enduring the same attacks and allegations of being anti-growth as does Islam (as mentioned before). “…sustainability is more about the search for peaceful coexistence between economic development and the environment. “And the earth We have spread out (like a carpet). it sets out certain limitations on development in general. this simply means that the needs of making. However. “Ecology in Islam: Protection of the Web of Life a Duty for Muslims” in Washington Report on Middle East Affairs. Syari‘ah requires man to 41 42 http://www. There are more than 6.65. the Muslim jurists found the basis to formulate guidelines for promoting sustainable development. Earth is mentioned about 453 times in the Qur’an.000 verses in the Qur'an. imposing on the believers to reflect on the importance of the study of the relationship between living organisms and their environment. Thus.uitp.org/Public-Transport/sustainabledevelopment/ accessed on 20th November 2011. and produced therein all kinds of things in due balance” 43 There are no direct statements providing for sustainable development in the Qur’an.” 42 This is very much in line with Islamic teachings The Quranic verse. the author defended sustainable development to be a ideology that. p.Diagram: Sustainable Development components and their interactions Source: Adapted from Ralph Hall. This principle is also shared by the environmentalists under the doctrine of ‘sustainable development’ and the concept of ‘carrying capacity’. However. October 1991. or altering roads must comply with environmental protection principles. 44 Dr. Note 38 p 9. to make the best use of reason and to maintain the balance and proportion God has built into His creation. one eighth of the Book. set thereon mountains firm and immovable. and that do not undermine future generations. Translation by Yusuf Ali. It is about finding ways to promote growth that are not at the expense of the environment. Introducing the Concept of Sustainable Transport to the U. whereas sky and heavens are mentioned only about 320 times. some 750. 10 . 44 Although Islam does provide for construction and maintenance of roads. Neither the environment nor the public health shall be compromised in carrying out development. 43 Al-Hijr:19.S. Hasan Zillur Rahim. there are Qur'anic verses describing the nature and natural phenomena outnumber verses dealing with commandments and sacraments.
Allah (SWT) says. covering pot holes. • Street Construction and Maintenance Duty Imposed on the Government It is unmistakable that the government or any other authorities has the power to make laws and regulations pertaining to construction and maintenance of roads. society and eventually a better universe. Poorly maintained roads can cause injuries to the users and this is indeed something that need to be given serious attention. The authority must ensure that the roads connecting people are in good condition so that the people can go to places of worship. family. They must assure that the ways towards good are enjoined. Translation by Yusuf Ali. and in the civil law refers to the duty of maintaining the street is imposed on the authority. Maintenance of roads includes the act of sealing of cracks. Although there are no specific Quranic text or Hadith on street maintenance. The importance of constructing roads for use of mankind and maintaining of roads is equally important like constructing of roads. The Government is imposed with the duty to manage the affairs of the State and protecting the citizens interests. “(They are) those who.observe the guidelines laid down. resurfacing. Allah (SAW) says. street condition deteriorates over time owing to wear and tear and compounded by poor maintenance poses adverse impacts on the quality of the roads. “It is He Who has made the earth manageable for you. Maintenance is often harder than construction. Islam offers a more comprehensive method in ensuring proper maintenance of street. Translation by Yusuf Ali. sealing and various types of surface treatment. Vardit Rispler in his book underlined how Islam strives to reduce the cases 45 46 Al-Jumua: 10. Just like any other infrastructure. Al-Mulk: 15. Translation by Yusuf Ali. Allah instructs the Muslims to walk on the earth in search for Allah’s rizk (sustenance). Government is not only answerable to the people in this world but also answerable to Allah in the Hereafter. that is the spiritual contentment of man. if We establish them in the land. Islam views the responsibility imposed on the authority as an important aspect that must be enforced. or conduct businesses. “And when the Prayer is finished. his descendants. 47 Al-Hajj: 41. owing to the concept of ‘accountability’ and ‘seeking Allah’s pleasure’. or travel to seek knowledge in comfort. Position of street maintenance as perceived under the Shari‘ah. but one may by inference conclude that the maintenance of street shall be within the responsibility of the authority. The development and quality of roads in a country reflects the growth of the particular country. 11 . However. establish regular prayer and give regular charity. then may ye disperse through the land. and seek of the Bounty of Allah: and celebrate the Praises of Allah often (and without stint): that ye may prosper”45 and. the physical and mental well being of man. It is often said that the conditions of the roads in the Muslim world need improvements. enjoin the right and forbid the wrong: with Allah rests the end (and decision) of (all) affairs”47 A strong indication to support the above idea can be seen in the seriousness of Islam in preventing handicaps cause by accident. so traverse ye through its tracts and enjoy of the Sustenance which He furnishes: but unto Him is the Resurrection” 46 These needs must be provided and protected by the authority. and correct manner of dealing with property with ultimate aim of creating a healthy and virtuous individual.
Translation by Yusuf Ali. the maqasid al-Syariah. The protection of life which includes limbs is one of the five purpose of the Shari‘ah. the (only) protection comes from Allah. the Civil law lacks. Brotherhood simply means that every Muslim is a brother to another Muslim and every person would want the best for his fellow brothers. Local authority does this due to its legal duty and amanah but the public. “The Prophet (SAW) forbade robbery (taking away what belongs to others without permission) and also forbade mutilation (or maiming) of bodies”50 With regards to the public or an individual. Hadith No. does so to discharge his religious or spiritual duty owed to Allah (SWT). As stated in the earlier discussion. the Holy Prophet (SAW) said.”52 Another cause for this success is the concept of brotherhood in Islam. “There. The verses in the Qur’an expressly prohibits transgression. Allah will bring him out of the discomfort. which again. As analyzed from a casebased approach. To this effect. Volume 3. 12 .49 This is indeed very true as accidents can at times cause irreparable harm and leave permanent disabilities. 52 Al-Kahf: 44. This can easily be deduced form the strictness of Islam in its effort of eliminating all possible causes of disability. He is the Best to reward and the Best to give success. The Netherland: Springer. and whoever screened a Muslim. at individual level. Whoever fulfilled the needs of his brother. 2007. the responsibility becomes a religious duty and with no legal implication entailed. Allah (SWT) promises. There are a number of Hadith supporting such prohibition. 622. Vardit Rispler. preserving good causes and preventing bad ones. 51 • Maintenance of Roads Owing to the concept of accountability and seeking Allah (SWT)’s pleasure. This is based on the principles of hifz al-masalih and dar’ al-mafasid i. whoever brought his (Muslim) brother out of a discomfort. Islam in this aspect has adopted preventive measure and ruled that every law pertaining to street regulations must be strictly adhered to. 53 Narrated by ‘Abdullah bin Umar. Volume 3. for instance.e. Allah will screen him on the Day of Resurrection”53 • Payment of Compensation for Injuries Arising from Poorly Maintained Roads Payment of compensation to road users for injuries or damages suffered due to poor road conditions is an important aspect that needs to be incorporated into any proposed legislation. This is in line with the Shari‘ah.of disability. “A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim. Allah will fulfill his needs. 50 Sahih Bukhari. 51 Refer note 9. taking care or maintaining the street is a collective responsibility in Islam. whoever helps remove an obstacle lying on the street which may be injurious will be rewarded by Allah (SWT). Disability in Islamic Law. damages incurred by any member of the public which is caused by the failure on the part of the authority to execute its duty properly must be compensated by that particular authority. so he should not oppress him. nor should he hand him over to an oppressor.48 Rispler is of the opinion that Islam adopts preventive measure rather than curing. Book: Oppression. Ibid. Hadith No. ‘Abdullah bin Yazid Al-Ansari had narrated. Book: Oppression. Allah will bring him out of the discomforts of the Day of Resurrection. 48 49 Chaim. the True One. Sahih Buhkari. 654.
whosoever has emigrated for the sake of Allah and His messenger. This can be seen in the practice of the Prophet (SAW) sending diplomats in representing him.net/BR28. then his emigration is for the sake of that which [moved him] to emigrate. Therefore. This is because in Islam. Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “a man’s action is according to his intention.1 57 ibid 13 . the final or primary accountability rests with Allah. the caliphate system was considered superior to any other. as this can cause lack of safety of the people and degrade environmental protection.”57 Any person involved in planning. A legal maxim ‘al-‘umur bi maqasidiha which means ‘matters are determined according to intention’ implies that delegation based on the right intention is allowed in Islam.55 Democracy’s moral power lies in the idea that the citizens of a nation are the sovereign.2/abou. Shari‘ah law. the intention must be right to arrive at the true goal. Originally published in the April/May 2003 issue of Boston Review. and an individual is [rewarded] only according to that which he intends. Whosoever emigrated for the sake of worldly gain. then his emigration was for Allah and His messenger. Any act which is not against the Shari‘ah and that might bring good to the people is not only allowed but encouraged in Islam. Muslims actions are required to tie in with their intention ( niyyah). Government must establish institutions for administering. 54 In espousing the rule of law and limited government. Enforcement of law and conflict resolution is given utmost importance. internet edition accessed from http://bostonreview. construction and maintenance must ensure that his activities are organised strategically to comply with principles of Shari‘ah to achieve pleasure of God (mardatillah).• Establishing of Institutions for Administering. established based on Shari‘ah law as the best system of government to prevent oppression. fulfills the criteria of justice and legitimacy and binds governed and governor alike. He must remember that 54 Khaled Abou El Fadl.html on 10th January 2012 55 Ibid 56 Imam Nawawi’s Forty Hadith. and in modern representative democracies people can elect their representatives not merely leaders. Hadith No. classical Muslim scholars embraced core elements of modern democratic practice. • Regulating Professionals Involved in the Construction and Maintenance Sector The professionals involved in the construction and maintenance of roads must also be provided with guidelines on the conduct of their work that is expected to be carried out in accordance with the required professional standards. implementing and enforcing of law to provide a balanced system. God will punish the person severely for the bad intention ( mala fide). Islam and the Challenge of Democracy . Because it is based on the rule of law and thus deprives human beings of arbitrary authority over other human beings. however. Islam also recognizes the establishment of institutions and delegation of powers in implementing and enforcing law. A planner must not plan with intention solely to derive profit at the expense of the community and the environment. narrated that Umar b. (SWT). Limited government and the rule of law are two important aspects of government. The concept of ‘accountability’ is emphasized in Islam. according to Muslim jurists. al-Khattab that the Prophet (SAW) said: Deeds are [a result] only of the intentions [of the actor]. Implementing and Enforcing of Regulations Islam promotes the system of Caliphate. or a woman [whom he desires] to marry. This legal maxim is formed based on a Hadith narrated by Narrated by Bukhari and Muslim. In a democracy. the people’s fundamental rights must be given protection to ensure their well-being and interests of the individual members are guaranteed." 56 The persons’ delegated with the power is also expected to be accountable for their acts and consequences arising from wrongful exercise of powers.
Apart from the above genuine faith. it is no doubt that the Muslims are faced with a formidable task of developing the Ummah’s well being. constructing and maintaining the roads. 1989. in various capacities.net/attachments/916_ajiss24-1-stripped%20-%20Dusuki%20and%20Abdullah%20%20Maqasid%20Al-Syariah. Muslims are often made to believe that Islamic law is very limited and it’s not easy to derive law ordinarily. “The Meaning of the Holy Qur‟an” 4th Edn p. Muslims are beginning to realize that most of these models failed to meet the holistic needs of Muslims. “Ye are the best of people. Sustainable Development in Islam.he is planning for God’s vicegerent (insan khalifah) and not solely for material gain. In Surah Ali Imran:110 it is expressed that. 25-45.”. and Corporate Social Responsibility. The American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences 24:1 pp. Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki and Nurdianawati Irwani Abdullah.net/attachments/406_V11N3%20Fall%2094%20-%20Ansari%20-%20 Islamic%20 Perspectives%20on%20Sustainable%20Development. and had persistently proven to be unsustainable. the “best” in its broadest connotation is indeed very far from reality. IV. evolved for mankind. Maslahah.58 To the believer the truth in the above verse is permanently embedded in their soul for their faith in the Qur‟an has always been unquestionable.155.. and believing in Allah. Mohd I. Conclusion Allah (SWT) proclaimed that the Muslims are the best of people (ummah). The public interest aspect requires all persons involved in designing. and Corporate Social Responsibility Maqasid al-Shari`ah. but apart from the beautiful concepts that we had been promoting we are still unable to come up with a comprehensive models to implement the Islamic principles. To a great majority of Muslims. More than half of the world Muslims population for instance. forbidding what is wrong. many of the Muslims however. enjoining what is right. many Muslim nations prefer to adopt the proven models of the Western law ever since the models were introduced by the colonialists who had managed to implant the Western legal system. It is no doubt that as Muslims we have our own models for development. http://i-epistemology. On reflecting the roles and obligations of Muslim government authorities.59 The Muslims must remember that Islamic civilization has so much to offer and its incumbent on the Muslims to conduct research to identify the suitable models that could be implemented in the modern world at par with the Western models.pdf. This is especially so whenever they were making literal comparison on their actual socio-economic status vis-à-vis their non-Muslim neighbors. Hence. 58 59 Abdullah Yusuf Ali. Maslahah. The American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences 11:3.394-402. “Maqasid al-Shari`ah.http://i-epistemology. are still plagued with poverty and lived in sub-standard living condition. Ansari . were wondering about the real application of the above verse.pdf 14 .pp. These issues seem to be an inherited phenomenon of most part of the Muslim world. This is essential to prevent injury to the users of the roads. to ensure all measures for preventing harm are taken into consideration. Options are available to the Muslims that can be continuously refined in line with the development of the society’s needs without neglecting the fundamental requirements as set out in the maqasid al-Shariah.