Question: It is known that the sutrah (screen) for the member of the congregation is the sutrah of his Imaam. But if the Imaam says the salaam, does his sutrah remain for those who joined the prayer late, or do they have to have a new sutrah? I noticed that some people pass in front of one who joined the prayer late, and the one who is praying does not try to stop him. What is the ruling on that?
Answer: Praise be to Allaah.
If the Imaam says the salaam and the person who joined the prayer late stands up to complete what he has missed, then in this case he is in fact praying alone, and he has to stop anyone who wants to walk in front of him, because the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) enjoined doing that.
The fact that some people do not stop others from passing in front of them may mean that they are unaware of this ruling, or it may be the matter of misunderstanding, as they think that because they have caught up with the jamaa’ah that they still come under the ruling of those who are behind the Imaam even after they have begun to pray alone without the Imaam.
But it is essential for the one who joined the prayer late to stop people from passing in front of him when he stands up to make up what he has missed.
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Author: Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (رحمه الله)
Source: Kitaab ad-Da’wah 5, 2/92