Wearing the pants above the ankle

Question ID: 26582

Assalamu alaikum,
Respected Mufti Sahab, Hope you are well by the grace of Allah Jallah Majdahu. Sir I want to know what is the hiqmah in keeping the pants or paijama or jeans above ankle. Does it have any effect or one has to keep it as because it is the sunnat of our beloved Nabi. (PBUH).
When one wears pants or jeans above the ankle it does not look nice and Allah forbid it seems like a joker or clown and people look at him in a strange way and mock at him and laugh at him. This becomes more severe to office goers if he wears the pant above the ankle and then socks and then on top of that shoes, the socks are seen and so it looks un-easy and at the office people look at him with a different eye. The people think that he is not learned and not sylish and all sorts of thought come in mind. So what should be done in this case. Should one keep the pants below the ankle and fold it only when he is praying and the after prayer open it or lower it again when in the office or on the road etc. What should be done. If one stitches the pant so that the ankle is not covered and the pant is always above the ankle then too it does not look nice and socks and shoes are seen and one feels very awkward. It becomes even worse when, whether one is a poor man or a lay man or a simple person or a highly qualified person where one has to attend meetings if he is a director of a Company or a Big Shot or a Prime Minister or President and has to go to different cities and countries for meetings or other work or attend ceremonies and marriages or parties where many people are there and they are in coats and pants and other nice clothes looking neat and tidy with the pants hanging below the ankle and there in this situation if someone goes in with pants above the ankle and with shoes on it looks more awkward and one feels ashamed at that point and if some one even jokingly says that what kind of dress is this, is it Charlie Chaplin or Joker of a Circus or the Indian actor Raj Kapoor’s dress it becomes more embarrasing. So what is the way out of it.
One can miss one or two ceremonies like this but its not easy to miss all the marriages and ceremonies especially at this age, where one has to keep ties in contact and cannot sever ties with people or relatives.

What does Islam say about it. Does it want muslims to be in an awkward position and let people around the world laugh at them and make fun of them. Is there any way out so that shariah is maintained and also the work could be done without getting embarrassed. Like wearing the pants below the ankle when going to work or ceremonies and when at home or going to the mosque for prayers then wear the pants above the ankle?

2. Secondly, the girls or women will not be attracted towards these people and neglect them and refuse then look down upon them and may not marry them as now days the girls want stylish and handsome boys to get married. They might think that the boys or men who wears pants above the ankle are not handsome. What do you say about this.

3. Thirdly, At this age the pants and jeans and trousers are made in such a way that it hangs below the ankle and even if some boys want to wear the pant above the ankle ,some parents tell their children to lower the pants if he is wearing above the ankle thinking that he might not look nice and people might not entertain him and give him a job etc. What should be done in this regard . Does one obey the parents or disobey them.

Please forgive me for all the wrong thoughts and ideas that I have written. Pray for my forgiveness from Allah, but as these were worrying me I wanted to ask as these are happening in our daily life.
May Allah reward you abundantly. Show me the correct path.

Jazzak Allah!

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Asked on August 22, 2014 4:45 pm
Private answer

Before the detailed answer understand a few basic principles:

1) The Shariat is easy, complete, perfect, natural, and universal.

2) There is no embarrassment in adhering to the Shariat.

3) Allaah is the Rabb, the Sustainer, Nourisher, and Provider
4) Girls who seek 'stylish' boys should be avoided completely
5) Parents are not to be obeyed when they tell you to disobey the Shariat.

The 'Hikmah' of keeping the trousers above the ankles is as follows:

'Why is it a sin to keep the trouser, loincloth etc. beneath the ankles?


A Maulana counted it as part of the major sins to keep the trouser beneath the ankles. There is no doubt that a sufficient number of Ahadith point this out. After these Ahadith, from the Hadith of Ibn Umar , which is in Bukhari we learn that this is Haraam on account of pride, otherwise Makruh and if a person has no intention, then it is forgiven. Fataawa Azeeziyyah states that it is Makruh that a man has his trouser, loincloth etc. beneath the ankles.


Is it a major sin for the trouser, loincloth etc. to be beneath the ankles or not? Two things require research here. Firstly, what is a major sin? Secondly, does this action fall under the purview of major sin or not?

The first aspect, Majma ul Bihaar vol.4 p.358 (Hyderabad) mentions the definition of a major sin from Nihaayah, That action for which a punishment (Hadd) is necessitated. Or, there is a specific warning from the Shaari for it. There is no doubt that after polytheism, the major sins are different in terms of their severity and weakness when considering the punishment or warning mentioned for them.

>From this text we learn that an action for which Rasulullaah s mentioned some worldly punishment, or punishment in the Aakhirah, e.g. a certain person is cursed, or a certain person will not be looked at with mercy, or a certain person is worthy of hell etc. all these deeds will be called major sins. We also learn that just as the levels of good deeds are different, in the same way, the levels of the major sins are also different. Some sins are counted as severe among the major sins and some are less severe.

Secondly, after finding out the definition of a major sin, we must now see what Rasulullaah said regarding the trouser, loincloth etc. being beneath the ankles. A few Ahadith are mentioned in this regard,

1. Hadhrat Abu Hurayrah narrates that Rasulullaah s said, Whoever has his trouser beneath the ankle, he will be in hell. (Mishkaat p.373)

The same Hadith is reported in Majma uz Zawaaid (vol.5 p.122-126) by the following Sahabah,

Hadhrat Ayesha , Hadhrat Jaabir , Hadhrat Husayn bin Ali , Hadhrat Anas bin Maalik , Hadhrat Hubayb bin Mughaffal , Hadhrat Abdullaah bin Mughaffal .
The words of the Hadith of Hadhrat Anas are,

Rasulullaah SAW said, The upper cloth should be until the shin (or, at most) till the ankles. Whatever is lower than this, there is no good in it. (vol.5 p.122)
The words of the narration of Hadhrat Abdullaah bin Mughaffal are,

Rasulullaah SAW said, The loincloth of a believer should be until half the shin. There is no problem if it remains halfway between the shin and the ankle, that which is beneath this (the ankle) is in the fire.
Hadhrat Abu Hurayrah narrates that Rasulullaah SAW said, Allaah will not look at the person on the day of Qiyaamah that lowered his trouser out of pride. (Bukhari)
Hadhrat Ibn Umar narrates that Rasulullaah SAW said,He who drags his clothes out of pride and walks, Allaah will not look at him on the day of Qiyaamah. (Muslim)
Hadhrat Abu Saeed Khudri narrates that he heard Rasulullaah SAW saying,The loincloth of a believer should be at half the shin. There will be no sin if it remains between the shin and the ankle and that which is below this will be in the fire. He said this thrice. Allaah will not look at the person that drags his garment out of pride, on the day of Qiyaamah. (Muatta Imam Maalik p.367, Abu Dawud, Ibn Maajah, Mishkaat p.374)

Hadhrat Ibn Maood narrates that he heard Rasulullaah SAW saying,He who keeps his garment beneath the ankle out of pride, he has no link with Allaah , not in Halaal and not in Haraam. (Abu Dawud)

Hadhrat Ataa bin Yasaar narrates from some Sahabah that a person was performing Salaah and his garment was beneath the ankle. Rasulullaah SAW said, Go, perform wudhoo and come. he performed wudhoo and came. Rasulullaah SAW said again,Go, perform wudhoo and come. He performed wudhoo and came. Someone said, O Rasul of Allaah, why did you command him to perform wudhoo? he said,This person was performing Salaah while his garment was beneath the ankle and Allaah does not accept the Salaah of the person whose garment is beneath the ankle.

Hadhrat Ibn Abbaas narrates that Rasulullaah said, Every trouser that is beneath the ankle is in the fire. (Majma uz Zawaaid vol.5 p.124)

Hadhrat Abu Dharr Ghifaari narrates that Rasulullaah said, There are three people with whom Allaah will not speak on the day of Qiyaamah, He will not even look at them, He will not purify them and for them will be a painful punishment. One is the person whose garment is beneath the ankle, the second is the person that gives charity, and he shows his good favour and third is the person who sells his goods by means of false oaths. (Muslim, Mishkaat p.243)

In these Ahadith, Rasulullaah has mentioned the following warnings for the one that keeps his garment beneath the ankle.

1. He is deserving of hell

2. Allaah will not look at him, He will not speak to him, nor purify him

3. He is deserving of a terrible punishment

4. He will be in the ranks of the liars and those that show their favours

5. He has no link with the Halaal and Haraam stipulated by Allaah

6. His Salaah will not be accepted

From this clarification we learn that in the sight of Allaah and Rasulullaah , this is not a small sin. In fact, it is counted among the major sins. Regarding the doubt that the warning in the Hadith is not general, but it is for the person that keeps his garment beneath the ankle out of pride. Subsequently, when Hadhrat Abu Bakr said that sometimes his garment goes beneath the ankles, then he said, You are not from those people.

The solution to this doubt is that it is one thing to let the garment go below the ankle without an intention this is not based on pride, therefore this person is not worthy of these warnings. It is another matter to do this wilfully, out of choice. This is based on pride. Hence, this person will be worthy of these warnings because of his pride. From this, the doubt is also resolved that keeping the trouser or salwar beneath the ankles apparently seems a minor thing. Why has the Shaari mentioned such warnings for something minor? The answer is that the Shaari does not look at the apparent deed, but it is based on the intention/nature and that is pride. Because of this, this apparent deed occurs. Because the nature of the person is pride and pride is the quality of the devil, which is why there is no doubt that it is a major sin.

In our time, the people that are accustomed to wearing the salwar, trouser, loincloth etc. beneath the ankle, they take it to be a matter of pride. They feel low to keep the trouser above the ankle. They look down extremely upon the Sunnah of Rasulullaah - to wear the loincloth to half the shin length. Now, what else but pride is the basis of this? Looking down upon the Sunnah of Rasulullaah is worse than a sin, there is fear of the persons Imaan. Therefore, my opinion is still the same, that to wear the trouser, salwar, loincloth etc. beneath the ankles on purpose, taking it to be a matter of pride and to take the contrary to be blameworthy and lowly is a major sin. Yes, if it sometimes happens without intention, then it is not a sin.

Sometimes the jurists use the word Makruh for Haraam, as Allaamah Shaami has written (vol.1 p.131). Therefore, in Fataawa Azeezi, if it is written as Makruh, then it could be interpreted in this light.

Assuming it to be a minor sin, then too, persistence upon a minor sin will make it major. Subsequently, there is a famous saying, There is no minor sin with persistence and there is no major sin with repentance, i.e. the major sin becomes minor after repentance.

Those who wear the salwar, loincloth, trouser etc. beneath the ankles, their persistence with the sin is apparent. Therefore, after persistence, this sin definitely becomes major.

I have written that the book Az Zawaajir an Iqtiraaf al Kabaair of Ibn Hajar Makki should be studied. The writers words are supported by this work. Therefore, we find it appropriate to translate the texts of Shaykh here as well.

He writes,

Major sin 109: to lengthen the garment, or tail (turban) or sleeves out of pride.

Major sin 110: to walk with pride.

1. Imam Bukhari and others narrate that he who lets his trouser below his ankles will be in hell

2. Nasai narrates, The trouser of a believer is until the knee, then the shin, then the ankle, and that which is beneath the ankle is in the fire.

3. Sahihayn and others narrate, Allaah will not look at the person that walks with his garments dragging out of pride.

4. Allaah will not look at the person that walks with pride, dragging his garments.

5. He who walks with pride, dragging his garments, Allaah will not look at him on the day of Qiyaamah. Hearing this, Hadhrat Abu Bakr said, O Rasul of Allaah, my garment goes down, except if I hold it. Rasulullaah said, You are not from among those people who do this out of pride.

6. Hadhrat Abdullaah bin Umar narrates in Sahih Muslim that he heard Rasulullaah saying, He who drags his garments and walks with no intention but pride, Allaah will not look at him on the day of Qiyaamah.

7. Imam Abu Dawud narrates from Hadhrat Ibn Umar that whatever Rasulullaah said regarding the trouser, it applies to the Qamees as well.

8. Imam Maalik , Abu Dawud , Nasai , Ibn Maajah and Ibn Hibbaan (in Saheeh) mention the narration of Alaa bin Abdur Rahmaan from his father that he asked Abu Saeed Khudri about the loincloth (until where should it be). He said, You have asked someone that has information.Rasulullaah said that the trouser of a believer should be until half the shin. If it remains between half the shin until the ankle, there is no problem. Or he said, there is no sin. Whatever is below this, it is in hell. He who drags his garment and walks, Allaah will not even look at him on the day of Qiyaamah.

9. Imam Ahmad narrates with an authentic chain from Ibn Umar that he came to Rasulullaah and his garment was shining (as is the case with a new garment). He said, Who is this I said, Abdullaah bin Umar. He said, If you are Abdullaah, then keep your garment higher. I raised the loincloth to half the shin. The narrator says that until death he would tie the loincloth in that way.

10. Imam Muslim , Abu Dawud , Nasai , Tirmidhi , Ibn Maajah narrate that that there are three people with whom Allaah will not speak on the day of Qiyaamah, nor will He look at them. He will not purify them and there will be a terrible punishment for them. (This is a part of a verse of the Quraan). Rasulullaah repeated this thrice. Hadhrat Abu Dharr said, These people will be in great loss. O Rasul of Allaah, who are they He said, Those who keep the loincloth beneath the ankles, those who give charity and show/remind of their favour and the one that takes an oath and sells his goods.

11. Imam Abu Dawud , Nasai and Ibn Maajah narrate from authentic narrators that hanging the clothes applies to the loincloth as well, it applies to the Qamees and the turban. He who walks while dragging his garment out of pride, Allaah will not look at him on the day of Qiyaamah.

12. One narration states that abstain from keeping the garments beneath the ankles because this action is counted as pride and Allaah does not like it.

13. In Mujam Ausat of Tabraani it is mentioned, O group of Muslims, fear Allaah, join family ties because nothing brings reward as quick as mending family ties. Stay away from oppression because a person does not get punished quicker for something other than oppression. Stay away from disobedience of parents because the fragrance of Jannah will come from a thousand years away but by Allaah, the one disobedient to his parents will not get it. Nor will the one who breaks off ties, nor will the elderly adulterer get it and nor will the one who drags his garments out of pride. Greatness is only for Allaah .

Moreover, a narration of Tabraani states, He who drags his garments, Allaah will not look at him on the day of Qiyaamah, no matter how noble he thinks of himself to be in the sight of Allaah . The narration of Bayhaqi states, Jibreel came to me and said that this is the fifteenth of Shabaan. In this night, Allaah frees people equal in number to the goats of Banu Kalb. However, in this night, Allaah does not look towards the polytheist, nor towards the magician, nor to the one that cuts off family ties, nor towards the one that lowers his loincloth beneath the ankles, nor to the one that is disobedient to his parents, nor towards the habitual drunkard.

15. Imam Bazzaar narrates from Hadhrat Buraydah , We were in the company of Rasulullaah when a person from the Quraysh came walking with flirtation. When he got up and went, Rasulullaah said, Buraydah, this is such a person for whom Allaah will not raise any balance on the day of Qiyaamah.

The rest of the Ahadith dealing with walking with pride has been discussed in the beginning of the book under the discussion of pride.

Note: Counting both of them as part of the major sins has been clarified in the Ahadith. This is because there are severe warnings for both of these deeds. And the view of Shaykhan (Rafii and Nawawi ) who accept the view of the author of Iddah walking with haughtiness is part of the minor sins is taken to refer to the case when a person did not intend pride, that is linked to him like thinking low of the creation, otherwise, this action is part of the major sins because pride is part of the major sins, as explained. A group of our Imams have clarified this. This is the reason why a group of scholars raised an objection against Shaykhayn (Rafii and Nawawi ) that their acceptance of the view of the author of Iddah is debatable, when this deed is done with the purpose of pride. Allaah says, Do walk haughtily on earth, you cannot tear the earth and you cannot reach the height of the mountains. The evil of all this is disliked to your Rabb.

Sahih Muslim states, He who has an atom of pride in his heart will not enter Jannah.Sahihayn states, Shall I not inform you of the dwellers of hell? Every fierce, hard natured, proud person. Sahihayn also states, On the day of Qiyaamah, Allaah will not look at such a person that drags his garments with pride. Sahihayn also state, While a person was walking haughtily, he liked his condition. His hair was combed, there was pride in his gait when suddenly Allaah caused the earth to sink him. He will continue sinking into the earth until Qiyaamah.

From this explanation of Shaykh Ibn Hajar we learn that there is a difference of opinion held by some regarding walking with pride to be a major sin. However, no one has a difference of opinion with regards to keeping the trouser below the ankle being a major sin. And Allaah knows best.'

[Aap ke Masaail, Vol 7]

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Answered on August 22, 2014 4:45 pm