Question: When Yusuf (a.s.) wanted to keep his brother in Misr he had a valuable measure bowl kept in the baggage of his brother. Then a person went into the Caravan and shouted: O People of the Caravan! You are thieves! Why did Yusuf (a.s.) act in this way that his brothers who had come in the Caravan of Palestine should be implicated for theft? While false allegation and accusation is a sin and it is Haraam?
Answer: In the ayat that mentions this part of the incident is as follows:
“So when he furnished them with their provisions, (someone) placed the drinking cup in his brother's bag. Then a crier cried out: O Caravan! You are most surely thieves.”1
The apparent words of the ayat say that Yusuf (a.s.) had the cup placed in his brother's bag and then he had them accused of some other theft. This is the point worth nothing.
Now the question remains why Yusuf (a.s.) did this? As obvious from the 76th ayat he had no other solution for retaining his brother. Neither in those days of famine the laws of Misr allowed that anyone could be retained there for no reason at all.
Nor his other brothers were prepared to leave his younger brother in Misr. And as many commentators have written Yusuf (a.s.) had already told his brother. The 69th ayat shows that he already introduced himself to his brother in a confidential meeting and it is possible that he had informed him of this plan also. Therefore, from the point of view of Yusuf (a.s.) there was no difficulty in this matter became his brother had also agreed on this idea.
Another thing is that Yusuf (a.s.) did not blame his brother. He neither lied nor made false accusation. Rather it was the officials who thought that there had been a theft, checked the baggage and accused Yusuf's brother and detained him. Since Yusuf's brother had already known the plan he remained quiet. The ayat does not speak of anything contrary or that this incident was witnessed by Yusuf (a.s.).
- 1. Surah Yusuf 12:70