Timings for fard salaah.

Q. Concerning salaah with respect to the fard prayers, ie. five times daily prayers, if a person doesn’t pray it near the time of pray, for example if the adhan calls for Zuhr at 12:30 pm, how long does a person have to pray it before Asr pray? Regarding the other salaah how much time is alotted for each of them? Is it until the azan calls? Also if a person misses a fard prayer can he make it up any time and could he also make up a sunnah prayer?

A. The five time daily salaah has a beginning and ending time which can easily be obtained by salaah charts that are published and distributed locally as well as on the internet. The time of zuhr salaah begins when the sun declines from the meridian and ends when the shadow of an object becomes twice its length which is local time from 12:18 pm to 4:36 pm.

The azan is a call to prayer to indicate that the particular salaah has commenced and salaah in congregation will be established some time afterwards.

According to the Hanafi jurist, if one missed the farz salaah he/she can make up for it at any time excepting at sunrise, midday and when the sun becomes yellowish until sunset. As for the making up of sunnah salaah the allowance is given by Imam Muhammad from among the Hanafi scholars to perform the two rakaahs of sunnah after the sun has risen due to its importance, until midday.

As for the joining of two salaah in one timing, it is not permissible to join two farz salaah in one timing according to Imam Abu Hanifa (RA) except at Arafah and Muzdalifah during the days of Hajj for one performing Hajj.

Concerning the delaying of Fajr and Maghrib salaah, it is more virtuous according to Imam Abu Hanifa (RA) to perform Fajr when it becomes bright as the Rasool (SAW) said, ‘let it be bright for the performance of the Fajr prayer (Agreed upon).

As for the Maghrib salaah however all the Imams of fiqh have ruled that it is desirable that it be performed as soon as the timing comes in and its delaying will be disliked, as the Rasool (SAW) has said, ’My Ummah will continue upon goodness as long as they do not delay the Maghrib salaah (Abu Dawood).

And Allah knows best.

Mufti Majid Khan
Darul Iftaa