In an earlier article on the same topic, we discussed the meaning of human rights in the Islamic context as opposed to the modern day thinking on the subject. Human rights refer to the rights of humans given directly from God and not subject to the declarations of legislatures, political leaders or society.
We briefly touched on few basic human rights as outlined by the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ in our previous article on Understanding Human rights in Islam-Part 1. The rights discussed then include the right to life, right to freedom and the right to property.
Today we shall discuss the remaining rights including the right to social security, right to education and right to protection against torture.
#1.Right to social security
Social security refers to a system created by governments to ensure the financial stability and communal benefit of an individual and his household. Social security is essential especially in times of natural disaster, outbreaks, untimely death or sickness and/or accidents.
However from the Islamic perspective, the basic essentials of every individual should be met and if not then it is the state’s business to fulfill them.
“Zakat” (Poor due) is one of the main social security systems in Islam. It involves the collection of a percentage of an individual’s wealth (2.5 per cent) for redistribution by the state to the poor and under-privileged.
It is an obligation for every Muslim who has sufficient wealth to pay out the amount of Zakat due from them.
#2.Right to Education
In Islam, every individual is obliged to obtain education regardless of gender, social class and race. From the Islamic viewpoint, parents are given the legal responsibility to educate and sustain their children, while it is mandatory for children to take care of their parents especially during old age.
In Islam seeking knowledge is an act of worship and Muslims are encouraged to travel to faraway lands to acquire knowledge. Knowledge helps us understand our purpose in life and thus it helps us in getting closer to Allah.
#3.Right to protection against Torture
Torture is clearly unacceptable and forbidden (“Haram”) in Islam. Torture consists of injuring an individual or causing them excruciating pain both bodily or psychologically.
In Islam every individual has a right to defend himself during a trial without prejudice or torture, irrespective of race, gender and/or social status.
As indicated in the teachings of the Great Messenger ﷺ, “God tortures those who torture the people in this life” (Sahih Muslim).
Islam forbids illegal arrest or detention without any legal reason, because the integrity of the Human being should be guarded and honored at all times.
As stated in the Holy Quran, Allah says:
“Whoever works righteousness benefits his own soul; whoever works evil, it is against his own soul: nor is thy lord ever unjust (in the least) to His Servant.” (41:46)