Should we celebrate the death anniversary of a dead person?
It is not essential to observe the death anniversary of a dead person. In fact, celebrating a death anniversary is not a part of the Islamic teachings.
In view of the fact that Islam does not recommend (or prohibit) observing a death anniversary, it is important that such observance (of death anniversaries) should not be given a religious significance and neither should they entail any religious rituals. If death anniversaries are given a religious significance or if religious rituals (like a collective recitation of the whole Qur'an) are added in such observances (as is generally the case in the Sub-Continent), then it would be advisable to avoid attending such death anniversaries, as they may, in certain cases amount to an invention in religion (i.e. a bid`ah).
September 6, 2000
Answer published by Moiz Amjad