Assalamu‘alaikum SS Dato’ Mufti. What is the ruling regarding labourer with physically demanding work in the month of Ramadhan?
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 family, companions and all those that follow his teachings to the day of judgement.
Dr Wahbah al-Zuhaili in al-Fiqh al-Islami cited the words of Abu Bakar al-Ajurri: “Whoever who has physically demanding jobs and he fears that it will bring harm unto him if he continues his fasting, then it is permissible for him to break his fast and replace (qadha’) his fasting, on the condition that if he disregard his work it will harm him. If it is not harmful for him to not do the work, then it is sinful for him to break his fast. Majority of the scholars state that it is obligated for labourer to take sahur and set intention for fasting. If he then experiences extreme hunger or issue and he fears that continuing fasting will harm him, then it is permissible for him to break his fast and replace it later. If it is a certainty that it will harm him, then it is an obligation for him to break his fast, in accordance with the statement of Allah SWT:
وَلَا تَقْتُلُوا أَنْفُسَكُمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ بِكُمْ رَحِيمًا
“And do not kill yourselves [or one another]. Indeed, Allah is to you ever Merciful.”
Surah al-Nisa’ (29)