Halal FatwasUpdate

Terms of Corruption in Islam

BANDUNG —The term corruption is a product of modern terms that do not have an exact equivalent in fiqh or Islamic law. However, corruption always refers to some fraudulent practices in transactions between people for personal or group interests. Below are several terms found in the Koran and Hadith as a form of expression that contain elements of corruption, including:


Ghulul is a betrayal of the mandate that should be guarded. In the beginning, ghulul was a term for embezzlement of spoils of war before they were distributed. Therefore, Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani in the book Fath al-Bari bi Syarh Sahih al-Bukhari defines it as “al-khiyanah fi al-maghnam” (betrayal of spoils of war). The punishment for this crime is mentioned in QS. Ali Imran: 161 that the perpetrators are only given sanctions in the hereafter without imposing clear sanctions in this world.


Risywah is an act of giving property and the like to annul another’s property rights or obtain the property rights of another party. Al-Shan’ani in Subul al-Salam provides the meaning of risywah as “an attempt to obtain something by giving something”. In the hadith it is stated, from Sauban (it is narrated that) he said: Rasulullah SAW cursed the perpetrator, recipient and intermediary of risywah, namely the person who was the link between the two  (HR. Ahmad).

Aklu Suht (Eating Promises or Haram Goods)

In Islam, corruption can also be termed akl al-suht (eating what is forbidden). Al-suht itself means taking advantage of elements of position or power or authority to enrich oneself or another person or a corporation by receiving compensation from another person for that action. This is based on QS. Al Maidah verses 42 and 62-63.

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