Story By: Ana Marjanovic, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Newsflash
Muslims have been warned to avoid using “halal” hand sanitisers which do not contain alcohol because they do not kill bacteria in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
Experts have warned that non-alcohol hand sanitisers are “pseudoscience” and insisted that Muslims can use alcohol-based gels without fearing they are breaking Islamic law.
Reports state the some of the so-called “halal” sanitisers are made from ethanol, but this is still a chemical compound classified as alcohol.
Neuroscientist and author Dr Sumaiya Shaikh expressed her concern over the trend for ‘halal’ gels, posting on social media: “Seeing a surge of searched for halal, non-alcoholic hand sanitisers and some online vendors selling them,”
“No, it doesn’t get absorbed via the skin; it evaporates. They are not effective. Please stop using religion to market pseudoscience.”
Experts warn that hand sanitisers containing 60 to 95 percent alcohol are most effective in protecting the user against viruses.
Malaysia’s official Center for Halal Assurance – Halal Certification reassured Muslims they can use hand sanitiser, explaining the difference between halal and haram alcohol.
One Malaysian media outlet said: “Prophet Mohammad once said, “Cleanliness is half the faith (Emaan).” Fundamentally, alcohol-based hand sanitiser is a good deterrent against potent coronavirus, so it is not Haram or prohibited.
“Alcohol-based hand sanitisers are a necessity, not luxury”.
Products that are marked ‘haram’ are products forbidden in Islam.
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