The above discussion was based on the assumptions that both verses 15 and 16 relate to the fornication or adultery committed between men and women. However, some commentators of the Holy Qur'an, including Qadi Thanaullah Panipati, are of the view that verse 16 refers to homosexual act committed between two males. Verse 16 is translated as follows:
"And those two of you who commit it (the shameful act), torture them both".
Here the Arabic word used for 'those two of you is a masculine pronoun which presumes males on both sides. On this basis, these commentators have opined that this verse relates to two males committing unnatural shameful act, i.e. homosexuality. The commentators, who take both verses as referring to fornication or adultery, refute this argument on the principle that in general usage masculine expressions include feminine also. Be that as it may, the possibility of a reference to homosexuality in this verse cannot be ruled out. Therefore, it is pertinent here to give some details about the severe prohibition of homosexuality. Here are some Traditions of the Holy Prophet ﷺ and his noble Companions ؓ on this subject:
عن ابی ہریرہ ؓ ان رسول اللہ ﷺ قال : لعن اللہ سبعۃ من خلقہ من فوق سبع سمٰوتہ وردّد اللعنۃ علی واحد منھم ثلاثاً و لعن کل واحد منھم لعنۃ تکفیہ، قال : ملعون من عمل عمل قوم لوط، ملعون من عمل عمل قوم لوط ملعون من عمل عمل قوم لوط ، (الحدیث)
As narrated by Sayyidna Abu Hurairah ؓ the Holy Prophet ﷺ said: "Allah has cursed seven types of his creatures from above the seven heavens. He has cursed one of them thrice, while has cursed the others one time which is enough for them. (About the one whom He has cursed thrice) He has said, "Cursed is he who did what the people of لوط (علیہ السلام) Lot did. Cursed is he who did what the people of Lot did. Cursed is he who did what the people of Lot did." (At-Targhib wat-Tarhib)
عن ابی ہریرہ ؓ ان رسول اللہ ﷺ قال : أربعۃ یصبحون فی غضب اللہ و یمسون فی سخط اللہ، قُلتُ : مَن ھم یا رسول اللہ ؟ قال : المشتبھون من الرجال بالنساء والمتشبھات من النساء بالرجال، والذی یأتی البھیمۃ ، والذی یأتی الرجال۔
Sayyidna Abu Hurairah ؓ عنہ reports that the Holy Prophet ﷺ said: "Four types of people are, when they begin their day, under the wrath of Allah and when they reach their evenings they are under the rage of Allah." I asked: "Who are they, 0 Messenger of Allah?" He said: "Men who imitate women and women who imitate men and he who goes unto animals and he who goes unto men".
و عن انم عباس ؓ قال : قال رسول اللہ ﷺ ـ من وجدتموہ یعمل عمل قوم لوط فاقتلوا الفاعل و المفعول بہ
As narrated by Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas. ؓ the Holy Prophet ﷺ said: "If you find someone doing what the people of Lot did, kill both the doer and the one with whom it is done. (op. cit.)
In At-Targhib wat-Tarhib cited above, Hafiz Zaki' al-Din has said that four caliphs, Sayyidna Abu Bakr, Sayyidna ` Ali, Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn Zubayr and Hisham ibn ` Abdul-Malik ؓ had condemned those guilty of sodomy to the fire. In this connection, he has also related, on the authority of Muhammad ibn Al-Munkadir, an event to the effect that Sayyidna Khalid ibn Walid ؓ wrote a letter to Sayyidna Abu Bakr ؓ reporting that there was a man in a certain Arabian locality with whom they did what is done with women. Sayyidna Abu Bakr ؓ called a meeting of the noble Companions, - Sayyidna Ali ؓ being one of them. He said that a sin like that was not committed by any human group except one, and they all knew how Allah Almighty dealt with those people. He proposed that the man be condemned to fire. Other Companions concurred and Sayyidna Abu Bakr ؓ decreed accordingly.
In the Hadith narrations quoted above, the act of the people of Lut has been repeatedly mentioned. The reference is to the people to whom Sayyidna Lut (علیہ السلام) was sent as their prophet. Apart from their disbelief in the Divine Message and the Messenger, and their ascribing all sorts of partners to Allah, they were also addicted to this abominably unnatural practice. When the preachings and teachings of Sayyidna Lut (علیہ السلام) had no effect on them, the angels acted as commanded by Allah Almighty. They physically lifted the habitations of these people off the ground, then a flip upside down, and down they threw the whole thing back on the ground. Details will, Insh’ Allah, appear in the Commentary on Surah al-A` raf.
The hadith narrations given above related to homosexual act. There are other narrations which carry the severest of warnings against indulging in the unnatural act (anal intercourse) with women:
عن ابن عباس ؓ ان رسول اللہ ﷺ قال : لا ہنظر اللہ عَزَّ و جَلّ إلی رجل اتی رجلاً أو امرأۃ فی دبرہا
Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas ؓ narrates that the Holy Prophet
ﷺ said: "Allah Almighty does not look (mercifully) at the person who commits anal intercourse with a man or woman."
عن خزیمۃ بن ثابت قال : قال رسول اللہ ﷺ : اِنَ اللہ لا یستحی من الحق، ثلاث مرَّات ، لا تأتوا النساء فی أدبارھن
Sayyidna Khuzaimah ibn Thabit says that the Holy Prophet ﷺ said : Allah does not get embarrassed by stating the truth. He said this thrice. Then, he said: "Do not go unto women anally."
عن ابوہریرہ ؓ أن رسول اللہ ﷺ قال : ملعون من أتی امرأۃ فی دبرھا
Sayyidna Abu Hurairah ؓ narrates that the Holy Prophet ﷺ said: "Cursed is he who goes unto women anally." (At-Targhib wat-Tarhib)
وعنہ أن رسول اللہ ﷺ قال : من أتی حایضاً أو امرأۃ فی دبرھا أو کاھناً فصدَّقہ ، فقد کفر بما انزل علی محمد ﷺ
He also narrates that the Holy Prophet ﷺ said: "One who goes unto a woman in menstruation, or in her anus or goes to a soothsayer ( کاھِن kahin) and accepts his statement relating to the unknown, then, such people have rejected what was revealed to Muhammad ﷺ "
As for a fixed punishment for this evil act, there is a difference of opinion among Muslim jurists, details of which are available in books of Fiqh. Nevertheless, the nature of such punishments reported by them is as severe as it can be, such as, burning into fire, bashing under a wall felled over, throwing down from a height, stoning and beheading with a sword.