Rights of Non-Muslims in Islam
Islam is such religion that tells to safe guard the rights of even Non- Muslims as well. Prophet Mohammad PEACE AND BLESSINGS UPON HIM AND HIS FAMILY has performed many rights with Non-Muslims. He was Prophet for not only Muslims but also for whole universe including Non-Muslims. Islam says to love and respect other religion as well as other community to leave in harmony and peace.
Islam is a religion of peace and equality as it gives everyone the equal rights whether a Muslim or a non-Muslim. There is no discrimination for anyone in Islam. Islam is the messenger of kindness and The Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) was sent as a mercy to the mankind of whole universe.
The Holy Quran says:
"And We have not sent you but as a mercy to all the worlds" (Quran 21:107)
The Holy Quran clearly uses the word "universe" which clarifies that The Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) is not only the mercy for the Muslims but for non-Muslims as well. So there should be no doubt in any person's mind that Islam does not believe in equality and Islamic teachings are biased.
There are innumerable aspects of life where Islamic teachings stress the protection of rights of non-Muslims which are necessary to be learnt by every Muslim as he/she has to be answerable for his/her every deed before Allah on the Day of Judgment.
Islam has strictly forbidden the Muslims to abuse or speak ill of the non-Muslim religious leaders or saintly persons. Similarly, a Muslim is not allowed to insult other religions. A Muslim must respect other religions and their believers.
If Muslims conquer any territory of non-Muslims, they have no right to harm their places of worship in many means. Even, they are not allowed to cut their trees and attack women, children, old men and the men who are not fighting against them.
Islam does not allow a Muslim to enter the house of his non-Muslim neighbor without his permission.
Non-Muslims can move freely from one place to another in the Islamic state and carry out their businesses. In the lifetime of The Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) and the righteous Caliphs, non-Muslims used to visit Muslim countries with no restrictions (the only exception is Mecca and Medina). They carried out their businesses without any fear and even the Prophet (PBUH) himself used to buy from them.
Non-Muslims can seek asylum in Muslim states and the Muslims are also allowed to get asylum in non-Muslim states as the Prophet (PBUH) ordered the earliest Muslims to go to Abyssinia and seek refuge in the Christian country of Negus.
Islam has bound all Muslim jurists to be unbiased in their verdict as the Muslims as well as non-Muslims are to be treated equally.
Muslim states are also ordered to look after the rights of non-Muslims even from the funds of Finance Department (Bait-ul-Maal). There are some examples where The Holy Prophet (PBUH) did the same thing. Once the Prophet (PBUH) gave charity to the families of Jews as it is permitted in Islam.
(Abu ubaid, al-Qasim bin Salam, AlAmwal, Cairo,1969, P.804)
Imam Muhammad, the pupil of Imam Abu Hanifa, has reported that the Prophet (PBUH) sent some property to the people of Mecca which was to be distributed among the poor during the days of famine. They were idolaters and were engaged in fighting against Muslims.
(Al-Sharakhsi, sharh siyar Al-Kibar, vol. 1, P. 144)
According to the teachings of Islam, a Muslim must treat even the dead body and bones of a non-Muslim with respect. It is a great sin to disrespect dead body of a non-Muslim.
Islam gives equal rights to non-Muslims with the Muslims to exercise the right of freedom of speech. Non-Muslims can share their views and criticize any wrongdoing by the Muslims or Muslim state.
A Haidth of The Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) should be enough for a Muslim to take care of a non-Muslim's rights.
"Beware! Whoever is cruel and hard on a non-Muslim minority, curtails their rights, burdens them with more than they can bear, or takes anything from them against their free will; I (Prophet Muhammad) will complain against the person on the Day of Judgment."
About Author / Additional Info:
A teacher by profession