May 30, 2011

Rav Kanievsky Tells Kupat Ha'Ir To Not Be Deceptive

Kikar Shabbos website has recently come up with so many crazy stories and halachic decisions happening in the haredi community that they are starting to seem like the National Enquirer. I don't know if all these stories happened or not, if they were reported on accurately or not, and even if they did happen as reported why suddenly they are being publicized, especially in such great increasing frequency like never before. Perhaps it is simply greater media access than in the past, perhaps it is haredi journalists digging more for this type of information like never before or maybe it is something else completely. Either way, the stories and piskei halacha make for interesting discussion.

The latest incident of interest is a story that happened in the apartment neighboring that of the apartment of the Kanievsky's. The apartment upstairs had been sitting empty for some time, as the elderly resident died. After some time, the family rented the apartment to a tenant, an avreich who wanted to live near Rav Chaim Kanievsky. He probably has had to pay a mint for that location.

It seems that this avreich has been using the apartment but one of the rooms has remained unused. The family owning the apartment asked the tenant if it would be ok if they rented that room out separately to Kupat Ha'Ir, and the avreich agreed (probably happy to have some of his expensive rent deducted).

Kupat Ha'Ir wanted to rent this location to make a shop taking advantage of the proximity to the many visitors  to Rav Kanievsky's house, making it possible to solicit donations in great numbers.

the rental went through, and Kupat Ha'Ir hired a contractor and began renovations to make the room usable. Sure enough, instead of just renovating the room, they also opened up a new window and door right out facing the stairway to Rav Kanievsky's apartment.

The tenant, and the owners eventually, protested the changes to the apartment, and expressed their distaste at their apartment being used as such a collection store (I am not sure why they rented it to Kupat Ha'Ir in the first place if this is true. What did they think Kupat Ha'Ir was going to use it for?).

So, according to Kikar, the tenant, with the owners on his side, went to beis din and got a restraining order against Kupat Ha'ir from making such changes.

Ignoring The Dayan
Kupat Ha'Ir ignored the restraining order issued by the beis din and yesterday showed up and continued the renovations. After the police were called in, The Kupat Ha'Ir administration decided to go to Rav Chaim Kanievsky to ask if they could continue or if they should stop. Rav Kanievsky refused to answer and told them to go to beis din.

Rav Kanievsky Paskens
Later in the day Rav Kanievsky called them back in and told them to stop the construction. He told them to back off the idea and forget about opening up such a store upstairs. Rav Kanievsky explained that because there is at least the appearance of deception having been used, they should back off. No bracha can come from deception and dishonesty.

The Kupa people responded that they would listen to his words and cancel their plans, even at great loss.

My guess is that now they will create a campaign to raise money for donors to get the zchus of listening to Rav Kanievsky and help cover the losses.

1 comment:

  1. All I can say is I hope this story is somehow inaccurate. The picture painted is like Rav Kanievsky generally turns his head away, doesn't find the Kupat HaIr tactics at all distasteful personally.


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