Blood Money (Diyyah) is an Islamic practice in regard of compensation for blood loss. It is money to be paid to the heirs of a victim. It is also known as ransom by non-Muslims but I do not think it is an appropriate word for Blood Money (Diyyah). The basic purpose of Blood Money (Diyyah) is to compensate the family of lost person financially and socially. It is also a valid compensation for lives lost accidently in auto accidents due to carelessness of a driver or a mischief. The Islam promotes a pure justice level of equal punishment for accused as suffered by victim. There is an exception to this rule known as “eye to eye” as a person can seek Blood Money (Diyyah) for lost life or physical loss instead of retribution. Despite of grave judicial priority, Islam promotes Blood Money (Diyyah) rather than asking for retribution or murder of accused.
Islam prohibits the murder of a believer by another believer. An accident is exception to this prohibition. In case a believer is killed by another person and he is asked for payment of Blood Money (Diyyah), he has to pay the Blood Money (Diyyah). However, if family or legal heirs of victim forgive the accused person, he does not have to pay Blood Money (Diyyah). Blood Money (Diyyah) is a concept of compensation introduced by Islam in regard of getting rid of capital punishment for a person. There is not specified rate set by Islam for payment of Blood Money (Diyyah). It is generally acceptable as asked by victim’s family instead of any gender, state or religious discrimination. Blood Money (Diyyah) has to be paid according to the set traditions, customs and social norms. Blood Money (Diyyah) has to be paid in any case no matter the murder committed by intention or without intention. Before Islam came to existence, the compensation rate was to pay ten she camels for a life.
There is no definite rate for Blood Money (Diyyah) and it is left up to the will of a victim. In KSA however there are several rates prescribed in this regard. The rate specified is as follows. I am not a religious scholar so I cannot comment if Islam prescribes the rates of blood money. If you search about it on internet, you will find so many ways to calculate Blood Money (Diyya). However, the way Saudi Arabia calculates the blood money is on the value of 100 camels.
- SR 400,000 in case of intentional murder of a Muslim Man
- SR 300,000 in case of unintentional murder of a Muslim Man
- SR 150,000 in case of Muslim Woman
- SR 150,000 if a Christian or Jews man
- SR 75,000 if a Christian or Jews woman
- SR 20,000 if a Hindu man
- SR 10,000 if a Hindu woman
- It is important to mention here that blood money (Diyya) in case of permanent disability can be in millions. I have seen one case where court decided to grant blood money of SR 5 million to a paralyzed victim.
The topic of Blood Money (Diyyah) is widely discussed in all sectors of Islam. No matter which school of thought has to be followed by Muslims, Blood Money (Diyyah) is something very common in all school of thoughts. The four legal schools of thought consider Dhimmi as Blood Money (Diyyah) which is to be paid for compensation for life of a Jew or Christian. In this regard the Shafi School of thought considers it as one third of the Blood Money (Diyyah) to be paid in case of a Muslim. The Maliki recommended it half and according to Hanifi school of thought it is same to be paid same like for a Muslim. There are some cases in world, especially in Yemen where Blood Money (Diyyah) to be paid for a Jew or Christian is much even higher than the amount to be paid for Muslim. Claiming Blood Money for someone who has died in KSA is not an easy task to perform. I have explained it in this article for your ease. "Death Compensation Procedure"