What is the proof of reading Witr Salah in congregation during Ramadan?
There are several narrations that prove offering the Witr Salah in congregation in Ramadan.
From Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam)
Sayyiduna Jabir (radiyallahu’anhu) reported that Nabi (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) lead the Sahabah one night in Ramadan, and that he (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) also lead them -on that night- in three rak’ahs of Witr.
(Sahih Ibn Khuzaymah, Hadith: 1070 and Sahih Ibn HIbban; Al-Ihsan, Hadith: 2409, 2415. Also see Majma’uz zawaid, vol.3 pg.172, Fathul Bari, Hadith: 1129 and Fathul Qadir, vol.1 pg.409)
From the Sahabah and Tabi’un
‘Abdul ‘Aziz ibn Rufay’ (rahimahullah) states that Sayyiduna Ubayy ibn Ka’b (radiyallahu’anhu) -in the era of Sayyiduna ‘Umar (radiyallahu’anhu) – would lead the people in Madinah during Ramadan. He would lead them in twenty rak’ahs (tarawih) and three Witr.’
(Musannaf ibn Abi Shaybah, Hadith: 7766. Also see, Hadith: 7769 & 7772)
Hafiz Ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) has cited several such narrations describing the practice of the Sahabah (radiyallahu’anhum) and Tabi’un (rahimahumullah) offering the Witr in congregation in Ramadan as they did with Tarawih salah.
(Fathul Bari, Hadith: 2013)
All of the above prove the practice of offering the Witr in congregation in Ramadan. However, since there is no mention of this practice continuing outside of Ramadan, the Fuqaha (Jurists) have ruled that it may only be offered in congregation in Ramadan specifically.
The Grand Hanafi Faqih (Jurist); ‘Allamah Marghinani (rahimahullah) – the author of Al-Hidayah – states that this ruling is based on the consensus (ijma’) of the Scholars. [i.e, The scholars are in agreement that Witr will not take place in congregation outside of Ramadan.].
(Al-Hidayah; refer Fathul Qadir, vol.1 pg.409)
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,
Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar