Question: Some people participated in a funeral prayer without having performed Wudu or [in the case of the conditions being present, did not perform] Tayammum. Will their prayer be valid and what is the ruling with regards to such people? Someone said it suffices on behalf of all the Muqtadis that the Imam himself remains in the state of purity (Wudu) in the funeral prayer. What is the validity of such a statement?
Like all the other Salah, the funeral prayer is invalid without tahara (purity). All those who performed it without ablution are sinful of what they did and have committed a great sin and in no case has their prayer been valid. With regards to the condition of the funeral prayer that only the purity of the Imam suffices, what this means is that in such a case, the funeral prayer shall still be valid and the Fardh al-Kifaya shall be accomplished. This is because the Imam, who performed the funeral prayer, was in the state of purity and so his prayer was valid. Having a congregation (Jama’a) for the funeral prayer is not necessary. This statement in no way means that the Imam’s ablution suffices on behalf of every single one praying behind him. Such statement is flawed and open ignorance. Anyone who gave such a verdict is liable to be punished, since deeming an ignorant person a Mufti is Haram.
And Allah Most-High knows best.
Imam Ahmad Rida Khan رحمة الله تعالى عليه
Translation by Dr Musharraf Hussain Al-Azhari Translator of Majestic Quran, www.majesticquran.co.uk