Is reciting surah al-Faatihah in Janaazah a MUST?

There’s a difference of opinion in the 4 schools.
Hanafi and Maliki schools – it is not wajib to recite the Fatiha
Shafi’i and Hanbali schools – it is wajib.

According to the Hanafi school, Fatiha can be recited with the intention of du’a, not as recitation of the Qur’an.

Abdullah ibn ‘Umar (R.A) did not use to do recitation of the Qur’an in the janaza prayer. Similarly, the Sahaba Umar, ‘Ali and Abu Hurairah (R.A) did not use to recite Fatiha.
Imam Malik (R.A) said there is no practice of reciting Fatiha in the janaza prayer in the city of Medina (at his time).

Ibn Taimiyyah says in his fatawa that some Sahaba recited Fatiha and some didn’t. This can be taken to mean that reciting it is merely permissible.

Conclusion: There is no hadith that the Prophet (SAWS) recited the Fatiha in the Janaza prayers. Some Sahaba did and some didn’t. The Hanafi school followed the senior Sahaba’s (including 2 khulafa rashidoon) practice which was not to recite Fatiha in the janaza prayers.

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