Q. Some muslims claim that in the Fajr Adhaan we do not have to say “Asalaatu Khairun Minam Naum”, they even go as far as to repeat the Adhaan if you recite it. What is the ruling and daleel on this?
A. Ibn Abi Shaiba has mentioned in his Musanaf that Ata has barrated from Abu Mahzoora (R.A) that he (Abu Mahzoora R.A) called the azan for the prophet (S.A), Abu bakr (R.A) and Umar (R.A) and he used to say in his Azan, ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Naum’. (Musanaff Ibn Abi Shaiba, Abu Dawood).
Tabarani has recorded in his Mujam Al Awsaf that Zuhri has narrated from Urwa who has narrated from Aisha (R.A) that she said, ‘Bilal came to the Prophet (S.A) to give the Azan for the morning salaah, and he found him sleeping. So he said, ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan nawn’. So this became established in the morning Azan’. (Mazma’uz Zawaa’id – Nasbur Rayah Vol. 1 Page 339.
Imam Abu Dawood has recorded the tradition of the companion (Sahabi) Abu mahzoora (R.A) said to the Prophet (S.A), ‘O messenger of Allah teach me the Sunnah of Azan’. The Prophet (S.A) then taught him the Azan and at the end, he (The Prophet (S.A)) said, ‘if it (the Azan) is for the morning slaah then say, ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn, As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, laa Ilaha Illalaah’.
(Abu Dawood in his Sunan and Ibn Hibban in his Saheeh – Nasbur Rayah Vol. 1 Pg. 340).
All the above traditions clearly establish that the statement ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn’ was established , endorsed and sanction by the Prophet (S.A) himself. It is also evident that these words were called in the Fajr Azan during the time of the Prophet (S.A). In fact, he requested Bilal to place it in the morning Azan.
Based on the narration from Aisha (R.A), she said that the words ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn’ was fixed and established in the morning Azan – Nasbur Rayah – Vol.1 Pg. 339).
All the above traditions also clearly indicate that these words of ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn’ were said in the morning Azan which refers to the Fajr Azaan. This was not said in the azan for the Tahajud prayer, since this prayer take place at night and not in the morning.
In fact, the great Tabi’ee Saholar Saeed bin Musayab made this very clear when he quoted the tradition of Bilal (R.A) and then said, ‘ the statement, ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn’ thus became fixed in the Fajr Azan and the matter became established upon this’ (Sunan Ibn Majah – Nukbatul Afkaar Vol. 2 Pg. 42).
This is also very claar in the tratidion recorded by Abdur Razzaak in which it is narrated from Abdullah bin umar that he used to say in the Fajr Azan ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn, ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn’. (Musannaf Abdur Razzaak).
From among the traditions which are recorded on this topic, some are narrated with the word ‘As Subh’ which means morning and others are with the word ‘Fajr’. It is therefore clearly understood that the words of ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn’ are to be said in the Fajr Azan. This is what has been established during the time of the Prophet (S.A) and hence, continued throught the period of the Sahabahs, Tabi’een and Tabut Tabi’een, and this is what has been established as the Sunnah. The beautiful statement of Anas (R.A) stands as a solid proof for all that which has been said. It states:
Imam Baihaqi narrates in his Sunan Al Kubra with a sound (Saheeh) sanad that Muhammad bin Seereen has narrated from Anas (R.A) that he (Anas) said, ‘From the Sunnah is that when the Muazzin says ‘Haya Alal Falaah’ in the Fajr Azan, he should say, ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn, ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, laa Ilaha Illalaah’, (Sunan Al Kubra – Baihaqi Hadith #1984 who says that the sanad is Saheeh (sound). Sunan Dar Qutni Hadith #934 Vol.1 pg. 251, Saheeh Ibn Khuzaima-Hadith #386. Hafiz Zahabi has mentioned in Muktasar As Sunan that the Sanad is sound (Saheeh).
With respect to the narration whaich have been mentioned in the beginning from Ata, Tawoos and Aswad regarding the act of not saying ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn’. These cannot be used against such solid evidences which firmly established that this statement was endorsed by the Prophet (S.A) himself. Secondly, these opinions which are in the minority cannot be preferred above the opinion/verdict of the great majority of scholars from among the shabahs, tabi’een and Tabut Tabi’een scholars.
As for the statement of Umar (R.A) which has been recorded by Abdur Razaak that he (Umar) said that (the statement of ) As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn was an innovation and left it out, this is in opposition to the authentic narration which has been recorded by Dar Qutni in his sunan. In that tradition it is recorded from Nafi from Ibn Umar from Umar (R.A) that he (Umar) said to his muezzin, ‘when you reach Hayya alal Falaah in the Fajr Azan, you should say , ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn, , ‘As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn’. (Sunan Dar Qutni Vol.1 pg. 251 Hadith #935).
The gist of this entire discussion is that saying the words As Salaatu Khairum Minan Nawn in the Fajr Azan is well established in the Sunnah and has been accepted in this manner by the vast majority of the scholars from the earliest generation until present. Hence, it should not be left out in the Fajr Azan.
And Allah knows best.
Mufti Waseem Khan