In answer to this they remain upon the status of being Ahlu-dh-Dhimmah even if the Islamic State is no longer present and there is no Imaam for the Muslims in existence. This is because the ‘Aqd (contract) of the Dhimmah that was contracted with their predecessors is a permanent contract that applies upon them and those that came after them as long as a Dhimmi remains and however much time passes.
It was mentioned in Al-Ahkaam As-Sultaaniyyah of Al-Maawardi: “And if he makes Ijtihaad (i.e. the Imaam) his opinion in relation to the contract of Jizyah with them upon the basis of the consent and acceptance of their leaders, it becomes binding upon all of them and the generations that follow them century after century.” (Al-Ahkaam As-Sultaaniyyah, Al-Maawardi 144).
What is meant by the ‘Aqd (contract) of the Jizyah is the ‘Aqd (contract) of Dhimmah. Imaam Ash-Shaafi’iy in his book ‘Al-Umm’ used the expression ‘Aqd Al-Jizyah with the meaning of the ‘Aqd Ad-Dhimmah in many places (Refer to ‘Sabeel Al-Mithaal 182, 183, 186, 210/4 from his book ‘Al-Umm’).
We have previously stated in relation to the definition of Ibn ul-Qayyim of the Ahlu-dh-Dhimmah that he said: “That they have a permanent (forever) Dhimmah.” (Ahkaam Ahlu-dh-Dhimmah, Ibn –ul-Qayyim 475/2).
It is obvious that those who initially made the contract whether it was the Imaam, his deputy from the Muslim side and the leaders of the non-Muslims on the other side do not live forever. As such the meaning of the permanence or foreverness of the Dhimmah of the Ahlu-dh-Dhimmah can only mean that the Dhimmah applies to those who were living at the time of the Dhimmah’s contraction in addition to the generations that come after them.
Therefore, the non-Muslim citizens of the Islamic lands today are the sons of those who contracted the Dhimmah with the Imaam of the Muslims or his deputy. As long as the contract of Dhimmah is permanent then this dictates that those sons today in the age where the Islamic State is not present and the Imaam of the Muslims is absent, still enjoy the status of the Ahlu-dh-Dhimmah and the Ahkaam (rulings) related to the Ahlu-dh-Dhimmah are the same as what they were with their forefathers in the time when the Islamic State and the Imaam of the Muslims were present.
The above relates to the first point concerning the situation and reality of the Ahlu-dh-Dhimmah in our current time.
The above is a draft translation from the book: ‘Al-Jihad wa’l Qital fi as-Siyasa ash-Shar’iyya’ by Sheikh Dr. Muhammad Khayr Haykal.