Did Omar attacked the house of Fatima causing her to abort the child in her womb?

Q: One common thing Shias quote regarding Umar is that after the Event of Saqifa, Hazrat Ali refused to give baya to Hazrat Abu Bakr. Abu Bakr ordered Umar and a couple of Sahaba to go to Fatima’s house and bring Ali to him. According to sources such as The History of Tabari (and other sources), the Sahaba led by Umar broke down the door and dragged Ali to Abu Bakr to pledge Baya. This is all mentioned in some history books; Sahih al-Bukhari, Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, Sirah al-Nabawiyyah by Ibn Hisham, History of Tabari (Arabic), al-Isti’ab by Ibn Abd al-Barr, Tarikh al-Kulafa by Ibn Qutaybah, Kanz al-Ummal.

They surrounded Ali (AS) and burned the door of his house and pulled him out against his will and pressed the leader of all women (Hadhrat Fatimah (AS)) between the door and the wall killing Mohsin (the male-child she was carrying in her womb for six months).

A: Your Shiite associates have misled you with regards to the Bay’at to Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and the actions taken by Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu). The actual incident is not how they have portrayed it.

What ever has been mentioned with regards to this incident in the Saheehul Bukhari, Musnad Ahmad, Kanzul Ummal, Albidayah wan Nihaayah, Alkaamil Li ibni Atheer, Seeratun Nabawi Li ibni Hisham and Tareekhul Islaam Lith Thahabi, boils down to the fact that, after the demise of Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam), Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and the majority of the Ansaar and the Muhajireen were busy with the burial arrangements. On the other hand a few Ansaar Sahabah (Radhiallaahu Anhum) gathered with Saad Bin Ubaadah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) at Saqeefa Bani Saaidah. Their intention was to appoint Saad Bin Ubaadah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) as the Khalifah. Had this materialised without the mutual consent of the Akaabir Sahabah (Radhiallaahu Anhum) and the Muhajireen Sahabah (Radhiallaahu Anhum) it would have been very inappropriate. Seeing this one Sahabi immediately headed for the house of Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) and asked Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu), who was at the time busy with the burial arrangements, to step outside the house. At first Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) refused to come out due to his engrossment, but when the Sahabi hurried him and informed him of the importance, Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) came outside and the Sahabi informed him of the gathering of the Ansaar. On hearing this Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) immediately called Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu), who was also busy with the burial arrangements and refused to come out. When Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) informed him of the importance of the issue, he immediately headed for Saqeefa Bani Saaidah together with Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Abu Ubaidah ibnul Jarrah (Radhiallaahu Anhu).

This makes it very clear that Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu)and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) did not take any initial steps in trying to attain the Khilaafat; rather, they were busy in the burial arrangements. Another Sahabi had come and informed Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) regarding the gathering of the Ansaar.

From this incident one can understand the importance of Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu). Also, Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) did not go to Saqeefa Bani Saaidah alone; rather he took Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Abu Ubaidah ibnul Jarrah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) with him (these three Sahabah are from amongst the ‘Ashara Mubash shararah i.e. the ten companions who were given glad-tidings of Jannah in this world by Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam)). Apparently Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) did not take Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Zubair (Radhiallaahu Anhu) with him because they were the immediate relatives of Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) and it was more appropriate for them to remain engaged in the burial arrangements.  It has been mentioned in a Hadith that after Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) delivered Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) into the Raudhah Mubarak he said:  “A person’s family and relatives are the ones responsible for arranging his burial.”  (Sunan Abu Dawood, Vol. 2, Page 102)

Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) mentioned in detail during his Khilaafat that Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) went to Saqeefa Bani Saaidah in order to inform and explain to the Ansaar.  He did not know that in the interim he would have the responsibility of appointing a Khalifah.  This is also the reason why he did not take Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) with him.  When these three Sahabah reached Saqeefa Bani Saaidah they saw that the Ansaar were in a very emotional state and were about to appoint Sa’ad bin Ubaadah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) as the Khalifah.  This was under no circumstances correct or appropriate.  Besides the Muhajireen, none of the Ansaar would have been happy to take Bay’at on the hands of Sa’ad bin Ubaadah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and there was also a great fear that there would have been a revolt.  Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) has also indicated to this in his detailed sermon which is mentioned in Bukhari.  For this reason Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) stepped forward and explained to them with great wisdom that the Khalifah should be from amongst the Quraish because the entire Arab world respects them.  After this Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) raised the hands of Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Abu Ubaidah ibnul Jarrah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) in front of the congregation and requested them to take Bay’at on the hands of either of the two. The Ansaar did not agree to this but they demanded that there should be an Ameer from amongst the Ansaar as well as the Muhajireen which was also inappropriate.  How could it be possible that there be two different rulers in one country at the same time?  On this occasion Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) said: “Two swords can not be gathered in one sheath.”  When Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) saw that the differences were not settling and the arguing was not coming to an end and the fear of a revolt was becoming imminent, he made Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) ascend the pulpit and declared that he is taking Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu). Before Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) could take Bay’at, an Ansaari Sahabi took Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu). On seeing this all the Muhajireen and Ansaar that were present also took Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) except Sa’ad bin Ubaadah (Radhiallaahu Anhu). When proving that Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) is worthy of Khilaafat, Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) mentioned that “Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) forwarded Abubakar to lead the Salaat during his lifetime and he is one of the Thaani ul Ithnain i.e. the companion of Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) in the cave.  How can Umar become the Khalifah while he is present?”  Abu Ubaidah ibnul Jarrah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) said the same thing.  Zaid bin Thaabit (Radhiallaahu Anhu), who was an Ansaari Sahabi, also said the same thing and expounded the virtues and the importance of the Muhajireen to the Ansaar.  In this manner, those Ansaar who wanted to appoint Sa’ad bin Ubaadah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) as the Khalifah, also willingly took the Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu).

This gathering was a coincidence.  The Ansaar were the cause of this gathering. Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) did not gather them in order to attain the Khilaafat; rather they were forced to go to Saqeefa Bani Saaidah in order to avert an uprising.  If this method was not adopted and these three Sahabah came away from Saqeefa Bani Saaidah, one group of the Ansaar would have chosen a Khalifah from amongst them as they were in a great emotional state and were not prepared to delay the appointment of a Khalifah.  If at that time an Ansaar Sahabi was appointed as the Khalifah in the absence of the senior Sahabah there was a great possibility that the Arabs would have rejected him and disunion and bloodshed would have broke out immediately after the demise of Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam). This is exactly what a Sahabi indicated towards while admonishing the Ansaar Sahabah that:  “You were the first to support and assist Islam so do not be the first ones to finish it i.e. by quarrelling and fighting amongst yourselves.”

Now one should ponder that upto this point what did Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) do wrong.  They did not claim nor did they demand Khilaafat for themselves, rather after explaining to the Ansaar, Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) proposed Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Abu Ubaidah ibnul Jarrah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) to be appointed as the Khalifah and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) proposed Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) to be the Khalifah and all the present Muhaajir and Ansaar Sahabah accepted the proposal of Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu). It is not proven from any authentic text that Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) has conspired to do something and gathered the Ansaar at Saqeefa Bani Saaidah and their going there was part of the conspiracy.  If anybody claims this then they should bring forth their proofs.  This is also the reason why Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) had termed this Khilaafat as a coincidence during his Khilaafat because they had no idea in their mind nor was it pre-planned. Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and other Muhaajir Sahabah did not take part in this Bay’at because they were engaged in the burial arrangements of Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) and apparently they did not even know what transpired outside of the house. One cannot say that Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and other Muhaajir Sahabah’s failure to take the Bay’at was because they disagreed with it, rather this is the reason why those Sahabah who were not present at the time of the Bay’at were not taunted.  A general Majlis took place the following day in the Masjid-un-Nabawi for everybody to take the Bay’at so that nobody could raise any objection to Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) being the Khalifah and that he did this in secret.  It is also incorrect to level accusations against Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) of not calling Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and other Sahabah to Saqeefa Bani Saaidah because when they left the home of Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) they did not know what was going to happen, neither did they go there with the intention of obtaining the Khilaafat themselves.  Whatever happened at Saqeefa Bani Saaidah was a coincidence and unexpected.

It is proven from few narrations that after the incident of Saqeefa Bani Saaidah, Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) returned to Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam)’s house to in order to assist with the burial arrangements.  On the following day Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) sat on the pulpit in the Masjid-un-Nabawi and Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) stood in front of the Sahabah and said a few words and also excused himself for what he had said on hearing of the demise of Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam). He further said that: “Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) has passed away and you have the Qur’an with you.”  Umar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) then pointed towards Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and mentioned his virtues and that he was Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam)’s companion in the cave and that he is more worthy of Khilaafat than anybody else and everybody should take Bay’at on his hands.  All the Sahabah present in the Masjid took Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and this was known as the general Bay’at.  At the time of this Bay’at two very important and famous Sahabah, i.e. Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Zubair (Radhiallaahu Anhu) were not present.  This was very confusing.  Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) enquired of their whereabouts.  A few Sahabah of the Ansaar stood up and called Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) and Zubair (Radhiallaahu Anhu) to the Masjid.  When these two Sahabah (Radhiallaahu Anhu) arrived at the Masjid Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) asked Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu): “Why haven’t you taken Bay’at inspite of you being the cousin and son in-law of Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam)? Do you wish to cause disunity amongst the Muslims?”  On hearing this Ali (Radhiallaahu Anhu) excused himself and took Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu).  Then Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu) asked Zubair (Radhiallaahu Anhu) the same question and also asked him that:  “Inspite of being the cousin of Rasoolullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) and a Hawaari, do you wish to create disunity amongst the Muslims?”  He too excused himself and took Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (Radhiallaahu Anhu).

As far as what has been mentioned in a few narrations that Ali (R.A.) and Zubair (R.A.) gathered at the house of Fatima (R.A.) and Umar (R.A) went there and threatened them, I would like to say that apparently after the burial of Rasoolullah (S.A.W.) and before the general Bay’at in the Masjid, Ali (R.A.) and Zubair (R.A.) and a few Muhajireen Sahabah gathered at the house of Fatima (R.A.) and thought that because the general Bay’at had not yet been taken, we should appoint Ali (R.A.) as the Khalifah.  They discussed this matter amongst themselves and Zubair (R.A.) also announced that he will back Ali (R.A.) with his sword.  On the other hand many of the Muhajireen and Ansaar had already taken Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (R.A.) at Saqeefa Bani Saaidah, now if another Khalifah had to be appointed, there was a great fear of revolt and the Ansaar would again have demanded that an Ameer be appointed from amongst them.  Therefore, in order to suppress this revolt Umar (R.A) went to Fatima (R.A.)’s house and at that time Ali (R.A.) and Zubair (R.A.) were not present.  It has been stated in Kanzul Ummal that Umar (R.A) told Fatima (R.A.) that:  “O the daughter of Rasoolullah (S.A.W.), nobody from amongst the people is more beloved to me than your father and nobody is more beloved to me than you after your father.  I have received the bad news that these people are gathering in your house and conspiring against the Khilaafat of Abubakar.  If they do not stop conspiring then by Allah! I will burn their homes.”  On saying this Umar (R.A) left and when Ali (R.A.) and Zubair (R.A.) arrived at the house of Fatima (R.A.), Fatima (R.A.) said to them:  “Do you know that Umar came to see me and he has taken an oath that if you conspire against the Khilaafat of Abubakar he will burn your homes?  By Allah!  Umar will most definitely fulfil his oath.  Therefore leave my house with the intention of dropping your opinions and thoughts and do not return with the same object.”  Ali (R.A.) and Zubair (R.A.) left the house and did not gather there again until they took Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (R.A.).  (Kanzul Ummal, Vol. 5, Page 651)

From this narration of Kanzul Ummal a few points have become clear and evident:

When Umar (R.A) arrived at Fatima (R.A.)’s house Ali (R.A.) and Zubair (R.A.) were not present, therefore neither did Umar (R.A) meet them nor did a fight or quarrel break out.

  1. Umar (R.A) associated with Fatima (R.A.) in a very respectful manner and also mentioned to her that she was more beloved to him than his own children.
  2. Umar (R.A) did not threaten Fatima (R.A.) in any way.
  3. When Umar (R.A) left Fatima (R.A.)’s house, both Fatima (R.A.) and her home were sound and intact.  No harm was afflicted on either of them.  Later when Ali (R.A.) arrived Fatima (R.A.) did not complain of Umar (R.A) behaving in a disrespectful manner, rather she advised him not to oppose Umar (R.A) and not to conspire against the Khilaafat of Abubakar (R.A.) in her house in future.
  4. Ali (R.A.) and Zubair (R.A.) took Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (R.A.) without any coercion.

The accusations that have been levelled against Umar (R.A) that he broke down the door of Ali (R.A.)’s house and approached Ali (R.A.) and Fatima (R.A.) in a disrespectful manner and due to this Fatima (R.A.) suffered a miscarriage is totally false and a mere fabrication.  In reality those who levelled this accusation are disgracing and Ali (R.A.) and Fatima (R.A.) and also making a mockery of Islam.  Was Ali (R.A.) so cowardly that he could not defend his house nor avenge his wife?! When Ali (R.A.) became Khalifah why did he not take revenge nor claim the blood money from the family of Umar (R.A) for the child that he had lost?!  The ones who narrate these types of narrations are in actual fact the enemies of Islam.  They portray the Sahabah (R.A.) in front of the Kuffar in such a fallacious manner that they were thirsty for governance, they had no legal system, the strong used to suppress the weak, to speak the truth was a crime, the oppressors were not punished, lies were spoken in order to please rulers, just as the hypocrites they too had hatred in their hearts for their rulers.  Can your heart accept such accusations and nonsense?  Could the senior Sahabah behaved in such a manner?  Were such Sahabah not capable of demolishing great empires such as that of Qaisar and Kisra with scanty ammunitions and means?  Will Allah Ta’ala assist such oppressors?

The claim that Fatima (R.A.) had a miscarriage is a mere fabrication.  It has been mentioned in an authentic book of history, i.e. Albidayah wan Nihaayah, that during the lifetime of Rasoolullah (S.A.W.), Fatima (R.A.) gave birth to a third son by the name of Muhassin and that this child passed away in his childhood.  This is why the majority of the historians mentioned only two sons of Fatima (R.A.).

The reason why Umar (R.A) reacted staunchly with those who opposed the Khilaafat after Abubakar (R.A.) was appointed as the Khalifah was because Rasoolullah (S.A.W.) has said:  “If anybody else claims Khilaafat after a Khalifah has been chosen from amongst the Muslims, then he should be killed no matter who he may be.”  (Sahih Muslim)

After the general Bay’at took place Abubakar (R.A.) said:  “I never intended to be a Khalifah nor did I demand it.  If you are not pleased with this Bay’at then I will step down and you can appoint someone else as the Khalifah.”  Majority of the Muhajireen, especially Ali (R.A.) refused this offer and said:  “No, you (Abubakar) are more worthy of the Khilaafat than anybody else.  Rasoolullah (S.A.W.) forwarded you in such an important issue such as Salaat so how can we pull you back.”  When Ali (R.A.) and Zubair (R.A.) were asked why did they not take the Bay’at in the beginning?  They replied that the reason was because they were consulted on the issue.  It has been narrated in the Shiite book “Ihtijaaj Tabrasi” that Ali (R.A.) took Bay’at on the hands of Abubakar (R.A.) and also performed Salaat behind him.  Ali (R.A.) announced during his Khilaafat that Rasoolullah (S.A.W.) did not bequest us to appoint the Khalifah and neither did he take a pledge from us.  If I had a pledge then I would have never allowed Abubakar (R.A.) to climb the Mimbar of Rasoolullah (S.A.W.) but in reality Abubakar (R.A.) was worthy of Khilaafat.  Rasoolullah (S.A.W.) also forwarded him, we supported him and worked with him, and after his demise we assisted Umar (R.A) and Uthmaan (R.A.)

One should ponder that if Ali (R.A.) had a pledge then he would have most definitely mentioned it during his Khilaafat when there was no fear of anybody reprimanding him or threatening him.  Had Abubakar (R.A.) or Umar (R.A) oppressed him any way, he would have also mentioned it but he did not mention anything of that sort.

We have elaborated in detail on the Khilaafat of Abubakar (R.A.).  One should accept that which is authentic and that which also suits the nature of the Sahabah Kiraam and Islam.  Those narrations which portray false pictures of the Sahabah and Islam will not be accepted because those who opposed Islam while portraying themselves as Muslims fabricate such false narrations and spread them in such a manner that causes disunion amongst the Muslims and also that they may disperse into groups and start baying for each others blood.  Not everything mentioned in the history books are authentic and you should not bother arguing with the Shiites, rather you should worry about being a practical Muslim.  Also, you should mention the Sahabah in a respectful manner and do not have hatred and prejudice for any Sahabi and inculcate love for all the Sahabah.  To love them is a sign of Imaan and to oppose them and hate them is a sign of hypocrisy.

If any Shiite keeps bothering you then you should ask him that:  “Was Ali (R.A.) brave or cowardly?  If he was brave, then why did he conceal the truth?  What prevented him from disclosing the truth during the Khilaafat?  If according to your belief (Shiite) Ali (R.A.) had any bequest regarding Khilaafat and governmental issues but he was not able to express them openly, then how did you find out about it?  Where is this bequest of his and in which Kitaab is it to be found?  Why don’t you prove it from authentic sources.”


Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 2, Page 1009, 1072.
Fathul Baari, Vol. 12, Page 145, Hadith no. 6830, Vol. 13, Page 208, Hadith no. 7219
Musnad Ahmad ibni Hambal, Vol. 1, Page 55, Hadith 133, Page 121, Hadith 391
Kanzul Ummal, Vol. 5, Page 635, 643-657, Hadith no. 14131-14156
Raudhul Unuf, Sharah Seerah ibni Hisham, Vol. 4, Page 260
Albidayah wan Nihaayah, Vol. 5, Page 245-252, Vol. 6, Page 301-303, Vol. 7, Page 331
Alkaamil fit Taarikh li ibni Atheer, Vol. 2, Page 189-194
Taarikh ul Islam lith Thahabi, Page 5-14, Page 639-642
Hum Sunni kiyun Hain, Page 233-248
Shia ke Hazaar Sawaal ka Jawaab, Page 291
‘Abaqaat of Allamah Khalid Mahmood

And Allah Ta’ala knows best,

Mufti Muhammad Ashraf
Jameah Mahmoodiyah, Springs

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