What is the ruling on opening a coffee shop in which there is a room for watching local and international football matches only, and smoking is allowed there because of the wishes of the majority?.
It is not permissible to give people permission to smoke in the cafe or anywhere else, and the one who does that is a partner in the sin.
Watching football matches is not free of some haraam issues, especially international matches in which women are seen, and in which music is played, in addition to the fact that these matches are based on gambling, which is giving prizes for something which is not permissible.
The Standing Committee for Issuing Fatwas was asked: what is the ruling on watching sports matches such as the World Cup and others?
They replied: Football matches which are played for money and similar prizes are haraam, because that is gambling, because it is not permissible to take prizes except for things for which Islam has given permission, which is horse races, camel races and archery competitions. Based on that, attending the matches is haraam and so is watching them, for the one who knows that they are being played for prizes, because attending them implies approval of them.
But if the match is not for a prize and does not distract one from things that Allaah has enjoined such as prayer and the like, and it does not involve anything haraam, such as uncovering of ‘awrahs, mixing of men and women and music, then there is nothing wrong with it or with watching it.
And Allaah is the source of strength. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon Prophet Muhammad and his family and Companions. End quote.
Ahaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn ‘Abd-Allaah ibn baz, Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn Aal al-Shaykh, Shaykh Saalih ibn Fawzaan al-Fawzaan, Shaykh Bakr ibn ‘Abd-Allaah Abu Zayd.
Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah, 15/238
Based on that, then if the owner of the cafe is able to prevent all these evils in his cafe, such as smoking, music and watching haraam games, then it is permissible for him to open this cafe; but if he is not able to do that then it is not permissible, because it is haraam to keep quiet about evil or help others with it. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Help you one another in Al‑Birr and At‑Taqwa (virtue, righteousness and piety); but do not help one another in sin and transgression. And fear Allaah. Verily, Allaah is Severe in punishment”
And the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever among you sees an evil action, then let him change it with his hand [by taking action]; if he cannot, then with his tongue [by speaking out]; and if he cannot, then with his heart – and that is the weakest of faith.” Narrated by Muslim (49).
And Allaah knows best.