Q: A Man was killed by non-muslims robbers who held him up in his shop. Is he a shaheed?

Yes, he is a shaheed. All the rules of the shaheed (matyr) apply to him.

Q: I have been told that outside Ramadhaan shooting stars are targeted at the shayaateen. Who are the targets during Ramadhaan?

The Hadith stating the imprisonment of shayaateen during the month of Ramadhaan does not necessarily mean that every shaitaan has been put in chains. It is quite possible that only those shayaateen whose function it is to tempt and misguide Mu’mineen are enchained during Ramadhaan. The targets of shooting stars being shayaateen is a Qur’aanic fact. The Qur’aan is categoric in this assertion. It is therefore clear that during Ramadhaan, not all shayaateen are imprisoned. Thus, even during Ramadhaan, the targets are the shayaateen, perhaps a specific category of shayaateen, e.g. those who operate in activities other than the misguidance of man.

Q:What will be the end of a kaafir child who dies in childhood, i.e. before becoming baaligh?

The most authentic view is that such a child will not undergo any punishment since na-baaligh children are not accountable.

Q: Is it Sunnat to apply camphor or a similar mixture to the forehead, palms, knees and feet of the deceased?

Yes, it is Sunnat.

Q: A man made a will in which he appointed his wife as the trustee to manage the affairs of his minor child. He stipulated that his estate should not be wound up before the child becomes 21 years of age. Is this a valid clause in the Shariah?

The appointment of the wife to act as a trustee in the matter is valid, but to withhold the inheritance of a rightful heir (the child in this case) until the age of 21 is not permissible. The mother may advise the baaligh child, but she has no right to withold his inheritance in the way stipulated by the Will. The age of puberty in Islam is not 21.

At the age of fifteen a child becomes baaligh. However, if a child upon attaining the age of buloogh is utterly reckless and wholly unfit to administer large amounts of money, then the rightful guardians may withhold the wealth of the child until he/she attains understanding. In such a case, the money should be invested profitably in lawful avenues for the benefit of its owner.

Q: Should I increase recitation of Durood or Istighfaar?
Both should be recited on a daily basis. There is no standard stipulated by the Shariah for reciting any form of Thikr. It is left to the discretion and inclination of the individual. You may increase any form of Thikr as you deem it. On Fridays, one should generally recite more Durood.

Q: A man had an illicit affair with his wife’s sister. Does this affect his nikah? Someone said that his nikah has become null and void by this misdeed with the wife’s sister.
The nikah is not affected. The heinous act of immorality is the result of purdah not being observed. Purdah between a man and his sisters-in-law is of greater importance than for complete strangers. Although the Shariah emphasizes more on the observance of Purdah between brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, even those Ulama who adhere to an outer facade of Hijaab are grossly deficient in this regard.