Bay’us Salam or Forward buying

Bay’us Salam or Forward buying

1. Prior to harvesting or after harvesting the crops, one gives R100 to a person and says: “(After two or three months) in a certain month, on a certain day, I will take wheat in exchange for this R100 which I am giving you now.” In addition to this, the person also specified the quantity of wheat that he will take in exchange for this money. This transaction is valid. He will have to give the wheat in the month and date which he had specified and at that very price which they had agreed upon. This is irrespective of whether the market value of the wheat on that specified date is more or less than the price that he had specified. Such a transaction is known as bay’us salam. In order for this transaction to be valid, there are several conditions. Try and understand them thoroughly.

The type, quality, class, etc. of the wheat (or whatever other crop one is purchasing) should be clearly mentioned so that there is no dispute when taking delivery of the item. For example, he must state: “You must give me a certain type of wheat. It must not be too fine nor too coarse. It must be of a high quality and not of an inferior quality. It must not be mixed with anything else such as gram, peas, etc. It must be thoroughly dried and not wet.” In short, whatever type of item he wishes to purchase, he must clearly state how it should be so that there is no dispute later. If, at that time, he did not stipulate but merely said: “You must give me wheat in exchange for this R100”, then this transaction will not be permissible. Alternatively, if he merely said that he must give him some husk or rice without specifying the type or quality; then this will not be permissible.

The second condition is that he must also specify the weight, that for R100 he will take 10 kilos or 15 kilos or whatever the amount may be. If the person says that he must give it to him according to the market rate at that time or that he must give 2 kilos more than whatever the market rate will be at that time, this will not be permissible. The market rate will not be considered. At the time when making the agreement, the amount must be decided upon and once the stipulated date arrives, he must take the specified amount.

The third condition is that he must also specify the price that he is going to pay, i.e. he is going to take the wheat for R100 or R200 or whatever the case may be. If the person does not specify this clearly but speaks in vague terms by saying that he will take some wheat for a few rands, then this is not valid.

The fourth condition is that he must pay all the money at that very time and at that very place. If they agree on the entire transaction, separate and go away, and then the person comes back to pay the money, this agreement of theirs will be invalid and they will have to recommence the entire transaction. Similarly, if the person pays R50 in cash and the balance of R50 after some time, the bay’us salam will be valid in respect of the R50 and invalid in respect of the balance R50.

The fifth condition is that the person must specify the time of taking delivery which must be a minimum of one month. That he will take the wheat after one month on a particular date. It is not permissible to stipulate a period less than one month. He can stipulate more than one month irrespective of how much more it may be. However, he must clearly state the month, day and date so that there is no dispute and the person does not say that he will not give it you immediately and you demand that you want it immediately. Therefore, stipulate everything before hand. If the person does not specify the month, day and date, and instead says that once the crop is harvested you must give it, this will not be valid.

The sixth condition is that the person must specify the place where he wants the wheat, either in this town or in some other town. Alternatively, he could ask the person to deliver it to his house. In short, the person should clearly state where he wishes to have the wheat delivered or collected. If the person does not specify the place it will not be valid. However, if it is an item that is light and there is no labour involved in transporting the item, e.g. a woman purchases musk or pearls, etc. then it is not necessary to mention the place. Wherever he meets the person, he can hand it over.

If the bay’us salam is executed according to the above-mentioned conditions, the transaction will be valid, if not, it will not be valid.