The Holy Quraan says: “Believers! Fear Allah and waive what remains outstanding of usury, if you are truly believers. If you do not, then take notice that you are at war with Allah and His Messenger (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). If you repent, you may have only your principal loans, neither inflicting nor suffering injustice.” (2: 278,279)
The Quraanic verse is clear in requiring a lender to get back only what he has advanced. (It takes into account all usury, regardless of the extent; whether nominal or exorbitant.) The Holy Prophet of Islam (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) has disapproved of selling two measures of low quality dates for one measure of high quality dates, because he considered that as usury. He told his companions to do each transaction separately for cash, so that there is no element of usury in the deal.
Usury means an addition over and above the principal thing lent. In other words, it is excess, according to legal standard of measurement and weight, in one of two homogenous articles in which such excess is stipulated as an obligatory obligation on one of the contracting parties. Usury includes all kinds of interest whether the rate is high or low and whether the interest is or not added to the principal sum after fixed periods.
The following are, therefore, the ingredients of usurious transactions:
Read the rest of this entry »