Video Chips

By Mufti Taqi Usmani

Q.) What do the Ulema of Islam say of the following:

1) Is Television Permissible in Islam. Also from the aspect of Photography. Is it Halal?

2) Zaid works in a firm that sometimes develop micro-chips that are used to enhance the quality of images developed using the 'red,' 'blue,' green,' color signals. Zaid's work is involved only is developing the circuits that mix these three colors to develop good quality image on the TV sets. Zaid's chip is not making the picture, it takes whatever is inputted and generates an enhanced quality color. If the input is of a living being then Zaid's chip will output that. If the input is of non-living then Zaid's chip will output an enhanced image of that. Zaid's company sells these chips to TV manufactures who connects Zaid's chips in their system which enhances the image quality on the TV set.

Is the income generated from Zaids employment halaal or not if portion of the income his employer generates is from selling these chips to TV manufacturers?

Please guide.

Abdullah Ahmed

A.) The images appearing on live programs or recorded programs on television are not the pictures in the strict sense envisaged in the Ahadith of the Holy Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, unless they are printed in a durable form on paper or on any other object. But the basic reason why Muslims are advised not to keep TV sets in their homes is that most of the programs broadcast on the TV channels contain impermissible elements.

Since these microchips can be used for both permissible and impermissible purposes their sale cannot be held as Haram.  It depends on the user how he uses it. Therefore, the income derived through the sale of these microchips to the TV manufacturers cannot be held as impermissible.