Is it permissible for a wife to call the iqamah when she is praying alone with her husband at home?
Waalaikumussalam wrm. wbt.,
Alhamdulillah, praise and thanks to Allah for the countless blessings He has blessed us all with. Blessings and salutations to the Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his wives, his family, companions and all those that follow his teachings to the day of judgement.
In the book al-Fiqh al-Manhaji it is stated: “It is sunnah for a woman to call the iqamah. The reason is its (the iqamah) purpose is to invite those who are present (to perform the prayer) and there is no raising of one’s voice in it.” Refer Al-Fiqh al-Manhaji (1/115).
Among the narrations which show that a woman is permissible to call the iqamah is from Ai’isyah R.Anha:
أَنَّهَا كَانَتْ تُؤَذِّنُ، وَتُقِيمُ، وَتَؤُمُّ النِّسَاءَ
“She called the adhan, iqamah and act as the imam for the women.”
Narrated by al-Hakim, al-Mustadrak (730)
The above narration clearly shows that a woman is permissible to call the adhan, iqamah and be an imam among other women. Although, it should be explained that the permissibility is only applicable when the congregation is all women or when she is praying alone. However, if there are men among the congregation then it is impermissible for a woman to perform these matters.
The reason is when there is a man in the congregation where men are involved, then the commandment to call the adhan, iqamah and be the imam are for the men. Imam Ibn Hajar al-haitami said:
فَلَا يَصِحُّ أَذَانُ امْرَأَةٍ وَخُنْثَى لِرِجَالٍ
“The adhan of a woman or khunsa for men is invalid.”
Refer Tuhfah Al-Muhtaj, Ibn Hajar Al-Haitami (1/472)
Whereas, Imam al-Khatib al-Syarbini adds:
لَا فَرْقَ فِي الرِّجَالِ بَيْنَ الْمَحَارِمِ وَغَيْرِهِمْ
“And there is no difference for the men (of whom woman impermissible to call the adhan for them) whether they are her mahram or otherwise.”
Refer Mughni al-Muhtaj, Al-Khatib al-Syarbini (1/323)
Thus, since iqamah follows the ruling of adhan in various situations, then it is impermissible for a woman to call the iqamah when there is another man with her regardless whether he is her mahram or not.
To conclude, we would like to state that it is unnecessary for a wife to call the iqamah when she is praying with just her husband. For the husband is the one who should call the iqamah when they are performing the congregational prayer together. Wallahua’lam.
Lastly, we pray that Allah SWT will give us all the correct understanding in practising the religion. Amin.