`Uqbah bin `Amir (May Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "Avoid (entering a place) in which are women (uncovered or simply to mix with them in seclusion)." A man from the Ansar said, "Tell me about the brother of a womans husband." He replied, "The brother of a womans husband is death."[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
This Hadith tells us an extremely important point in respect of the veil about which the majority of Muslims are unaware or negligent. The point that it tells us that a woman must observe the veil from the real brothers, cousins etc., of her husband because their visits in her home are very frequent and there may occur several occasions when they come across each other alone. For this reason, there are greater chances of mischief with them. This explains why the husband's male relatives have been regarded as "death", that is from the religious point of view they are fatal. In other words, if they commit the mischief, it will prove fatal because in an Islamic state this crime is punishable by Rajm (stoning to death). This can also be fatal in another way. If the husband begins to suspect that his wife has illicit relations with someone else, he might kill her or divorce her out of his sense of honour. Even in case of divorce, her life will become desolate. Another meaning of it can be that one should be as much afraid of meeting such women in seclusion with whom any kind of contact is not permissible as one is afraid of death.
When a woman is required to observe the veil from the real brothers of her husband, why would it not be essential to observe the veil from the husband's friends. Slackness in this matter is also very common nowadays. Although the dangerous consequences of this fashion come to our notice everyday through newspapers, people do not learn any lesson from them, and the fashion of non-observance of the veil is spreading fast like an epidemic. May Allah save us from this evil!