Is it correct that whenever Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) was on journey, he would read Surah Falaq and Surah Nas in the Fard of Fajr?
The following narration states that Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) on one occasion recited Surah Falaq and Surah Nas in the Fard of Fajr.
Sayyiduna ‘Uqbah ibn ‘Amir (radiyallahu ‘anhu) reports, “I was leading Rasulullah’s (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) camel on a journey when he told me, ‘O ‘Uqbah! should I not teach you the best Surahs that can be recited?’ He taught me ‘Qul A’udhu Bi Rabbil Falaq‘ and ‘Qul A’udhu Bi Rabbin Nas‘. ‘Uqbah (radiyallahu ‘anhu) said, ‘Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) saw that I did not become ecstatic.’ When he alighted for Fajr Salah, he led the people and read these [two Surahs] in the Fajr. When Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) completed the Salah, he turned to me and said, ‘O ‘Uqbah! [Now] what do you feel?'”
(Sunan Abi Dawud, Hadith: 1457)
I have not come across a Hadith which states that Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) habitually recited these Surahs in the Fard of Fajr when on journey. In this particular instance, Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) illustrated the importance of these Surahs to the Sahabi. Therefore he recited it in the Fard of Fajr, indicating that these two short Surahs are able to take the place of lengthy Surahs which are usually recited in Fajr.
However, the Muhaddithun have also deduced from this Hadith that Salah should be shortened when on journey.
(Refer: Sharh Ibn Raslan, Hadith: 1462, Mirqat, Hadith: 848)
Also see here
Kindly contact a Mufti/Darul Ifta for further clarification.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best.
Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala
Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar