:From the book “ Fasting and Zakat” by Prof. Dr. Ghulam Zarquani Quadri.
INTRODUCTION OF ZAKAT
Before jumping to the above topic and explaining it in detail, it seems appropriate to define the topic and briefly talk about its significance and importance under the shade of authentic Islamic sources.
- WHAT IS ZAKAT ?
‘Zakat’ literally means ‘Increase’ or ‘rise’ or more.
( Lesanul Arab: Shaikh Ibn-e-Manzour, Chapter: za, Dar Ihya-e-Turasul Arabi, M)
Allah the Exalted says:
…..خُذْ مِنْ اَمْوَالِھِمْ صَدَقَۃً تُطَھِّرُھُمْ وَتُزَکِّیْھِمْ بِھَا
Take Zakat from their wealth in order to purify them and sanctify (increase their status) them..
In Islamic terminology, taking out a specific amount of wealth from the required property annually and giving it to the needy is called Zakat.
Zakat is mandatory upon Muslims who meet the required conditions.
Allah the Exalted says:
…. اَقِیْمُوْا الصَّلٰوۃَ وَاٰتُوْالزَّکٰوۃَ….
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 2 , Verse: 43 )
…. And maintain Prayer and pay Zakat…
Explaining the mandatory status of Zakat, our Beloved Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:
قَالَ رَسُوْلُ اللّٰہِ صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم: بُنِیَ الْاِسْلَامُ عَلیٰ خَمْسٍ، شَھَادَۃِ اَنْ لَّااِلٰہَ اِلَّا اللّٰہُ وَ اَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا رَّسُوْلُ اللّٰہِ وَ اِقَامِ الصَّلٰوۃِ وَاِیْتَاءِ الزَّکٰوۃِ وَالْحَجِّ وَ صَوْمِ رَمَضَانَ
( Bukhari, Vol: 1, Page: 11, M )
Islam is based on five pillars: to witness that there is no God but Allah and Muhammad is the Prophet of Allah, to offer Prayer regularly, to pay Zakat, to perform Hajj, and to observe Fasting.
While sending Shaikh Muaz (May Allah be pleased with him) to Yemen as a chief executive, Prophet of Allah (Peace be upon him) clearly reminded him that it was mandatory upon Muslims. He said to him:
……فَاَخْبِرْھُمْ اَنَّ اللّٰہَ فَرَضَ عَلَیْھِمْ زَکٰوۃً تُؤْخَذُ مِنْ اَمْوَالِھِمْ وَتُرَدُّ عَلٰی فُقَرَآءِھِمْ ….
( Same Reference, Vol: 2, Page: 528, M )
Tell them that Almighty Allah has prescribed upon them Zakat that should be taken from them (the rich) and turned back to the poor..
- SIGNIFICANCE OF ZAKAT:
As a format of this educational series, we will see the significance of Zakat and its positive role in maintaining the Muslim society.
- In the Holy Quran:
The word “زکوا ۃ “ is clearly mentioned in the Holy Quran around thirty two times. However, most of the times, this repetition has its unique perspectives to cast the luminous light on the importance of giving Zakat.
Amazing rewards await those who pay Zakat on their properties regularly. Allah the Exalted says:
(….. اِنَّ الَّذِیْنَ اٰمَنُوْا وَعَمِلُوْا الصّٰلِحٰتِ وَاَقَامُوْا الصَّلٰوۃَ وَاٰتَوُاالزَّکٰوۃَ لَھُمْ اَجْرُھُمْ عِنْدَ رَبِّھِمْ
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 2, Verse: 277 )
Indeed those who believe, perform good deeds, establish Prayer regularly, and pay Zakat will have their reward with their Lord..
Because of its enormous importance, Allah the Exalted has mentioned it next to the five times regular Prayer in several occasions during the revelation of the Holy Quran.
For an example, read the following verse:
وَاَقِیْمُوْاالصَّلٰوۃَ وَاٰتُوْالزَّکٰوۃَ وَارْکَعُوْا مَعَ الرّٰکِعِیْنَ
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 2, Verse: 43 )
And maintain Prayer regularly, pay Zakat, and bow down with those who bow down.
It is, of course, an honor to be one of those who were praised by Allah the Exalted. Praising the high morals and ethics of a prosperous Muslim, Allah the Exalted says:
اَلَّذِیْنَ یُقِیْمُوْنَ الصَّلٰوۃَ وَیؤْتُوْنَ الزَّکٰوۃَ وَھُمْ بِالْاٰخِرَۃِ ھُمْ یُوْقِنُوْنَ ہ اُولٰٓءِکَ عَلٰی ھُدًی مِّنْ رَّبِّھِمْ وَاُولٰٓءِکَ ھُمُ الْمُفْلِحُوْنَ
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 31, Verses: 4-5)
Those who establish prayer regularly, give Zakat, and believe in the Hereafter, those are on righteousness from their Lord and those are the ones who will be prosper.
Those who pay Zakat on a regular basis are eligible to be the friends of other Muslims according to the Quran.
Addressing Muslims, Allah the Exalted says:
اِنَّمَا وَلِیُّکُمُ اللّٰہُ وَرَسُوْلُہٗ وَالَّذِیْنَ اٰمَنُوْا الَّذِیْنَ یُقِیْمُوْنَ الصَّلٰوۃَ وَیُؤْتُوْنَ الزَّکٰوۃَ وَھُمْ رٰکِعُوْنَ
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 5, Verse: 55 )
Your friend is Allah, his Prophet, and those believers who maintain Prayer regularly and pay Zakat and bow down.
Along with all this, wealth does not decrease because of Zakat, but rather increases numerously.
Allah the Exalted says:
وَمَا اٰتَیْتُمْ مِنْ زَکٰوۃٍ تُرِیْدُوْنَ وَجْہَ اللّٰہِ فَاُولٰٓءِکَ ھُمُ الْمُفْلِحُوْنَ
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 30, Verse: 39 )
And those who give Zakat seeking the pleasure of Allah, it is them who will receive multiple rewards.
- In the Hadith:
Zakat is one of the strongest bases in the building of Islam. Therefore, one who does not believe in its Mandatory Status (فرضیت) would be declared as an outsider in Islam.
( See, Fiqhul Islami wa Adillatuhu, Vol: 2, Page: 735 )
Islam is not considered a complete religion without the concept of Zakat. Our Beloved Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:
اِنَّہٗ مِنْ تَمَامِ اِسْلَامِکُمْ اَنْ تُؤَدُّوْ زَکَاۃَ اَمْوَالِکُمْ
( Jame-ul-Masaneed wal Maraseel, Vol: 3, Page: 214, M )
Indeed, amongst the requirements of your complete Islam is paying Zakat on your wealth.
In a very beautiful expression, it is regarded as a bridge:
اَلزَّکٰوۃُ قَنْطَرَۃُ الْاِسْلَامِ
( Shoabul Iman, Vol: 3, Page: 195, M )
Zakat is like a bridge towards Islam.
One day our Beloved Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) swore by Almighty Allah thrice during his speech and got down on his head, crying. Everyone did the same, not knowing what he swore for. Later on, he raised his head while smiling and said:
مَامِنْ عَبْدٍ یُّصَلِّیْ الصَّلَوٰتُ الْخَمْسَ، وَیَصُوْمُ رَمَضَانَ، وَیُخْرِجُ الزَّکوٰۃَ، وَیَجْتَنِبُ الْکَبَاءِرَالسَّبْعَ اِلَّا فُتِحَتْ لَہٗ اَبْوَابُ الْجَنَّۃِ وَقِیْلَ لَہٗ ادْخُلْ بِسَلَامٍ
( Nesai Sughra, Vol: 5, Page: 10, M )
A person who makes five times daily prayers, observes Fasting of Ramadhan, pays Zakat, and stays away from five major sins – the doors of Paradise would be opened for him and he would be asked to go in with peace.
Because of its importance, our Beloved Prophet (Peace be upon him) asked those who have a strong belief to pay Zakat.
….. قَالَ رَسُوْلُ اللّٰہِ صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم: مَنْ کَانَ یُؤْمِنُ بِاللّٰہِ وَرَسُوْلِہٖ فَلْیُؤَدِّ زَکَاۃَ مَالِہٖ
( Mojam Kabeer, Vol: 12, Page: 423, M )
Our Beloved Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: Whoever believes in Allah and His Prophet, should pay Zakat on his property..
This section is closely connected to the philosophy of Zakat, which will be discussed later.
- In the Holy Quran:
- PHILOSOPHY AND BENEFITS:
With a limited knowledge and numerous capabilities, we are unable to unearth every single aim behind the prescription of Zakat. It is Almighty Allah who knows them all.
However, trying to find some of its benefits and its direct effects on Muslim society has been an interesting topic amongst Muslim scholars since the early ages of Islam.
Hoping to encourage young readers, some of them will be written here.
- Security of Wealth:
Everyone wishes to have his wealth secured. Addressing to this natural human concern, our Beloved Prophet of Almighty Allah (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:
….. حَصِّنُوْا اَمْوَالَکُمْ بِالزَّکوٰۃِ
( Mojam Kabeer Tabrani, Vol: 10, Page: 128, M )
Secure your wealth by paying Zakat.
Therefore, paying Zakat on the wealth is the best way to save it from loss through natural disaster, robbery, fire, or financial crisis, as it provides divine protection for it.
- Cleanliness of the Wealth:
Zakat cleans up the wealth and purifies it from its invisible wickedness. Our Beloved Prophet (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:
مَنْ اَدّٰی زَکَوٰۃَ مَالِہٖ، فَقَدْ ذَھَبَ عَنْہٗ شَرُّہٗ
( Kanzul Ummal, Vol: 1, Page: 1171, M )
Whoever pays Zakat on his wealth, indeed its wickedness goes away.
- Achieving Forgiveness:
Zakat plays a significant role in achieving forgiveness by Almighty Allah. Through Zakat, sins are erased. Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:
اَلصَّدَقَۃُ تُطْفِءُی الْخَطِیءَۃَ کَمَا یُطْفِءُی الْمَاءُ النَّارَ….
( Musannaf Abdur Razzaque, Vol: 11, Page: 463, M )
….Charity wipes out the sin as the water extinguishes fire.
- Reward on the Day of Judgment:
Allah the Exalted will give the best reward to those who regularly paid Zakat on their property. After mentioning Prayer and Zakat, Allah the Exalted says:
وَمَا تُقَدِّمُوْا لِاَنْفُسِکُمْ مِنْ خَیْرٍ تَجِدُوْہُ عِنْدَ اللّٰہِ ھُوَخَیْرًا وَّ اَعْظَمَ اَجْرًا
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 73, Verse: 20)
And whatever good deed you send forth for yourself, you shall find it before Allah, even better and greater in rewards.
According to the Muslim scholars, this glad tiding of enormous reward also includes above mentioned actions specially and other good deeds too, in general. 1
( See, Rohul Maani: Shaikh Mahmood Alosi, Vol: 82, Page: 221 )
Those who spend their wealth to please Almighty Allah, will be under the shade of rewards from their charity on the Day of Judgment.
….. کُلُّ امْرِئٍ فِیْ ظِلِّ صَدَقَتِہٖ حَتّٰی یُفْصَلَ بَیْنَ النَّاسِ
(Mustadrak Hakim, Vol: 1, Page: 576, M )
Everyone will be under the shade of his charity until the decision will be finalized amongst the people133
- Increase the Wealth:
At a glance, it seems that charity decreases the wealth, but in fact it causes great increase instead. Prophet of Allah (Peace be upon him) said:
….. مَا نَقَصَ مَالُ عَبْدٍ مِّنْ صَدَقَۃٍ
( Tirmizi, Vol: 7, Page: 25, M )
Wealth of a person does not decrease due to charity…
Unveiling the concept of wealth increase after giving charity, Allah the Exalted says:
وَمَا اَنْفَقْتُمْ مِنْ شَیْءٍ فَھُوَ یُخْلِفُہٗ وَھُوَ خَیْرُ الرّٰزِقِیْنَ
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 34, Verse: 39 )
And whatever you spend for the sake of Allah, He will replace it, as He is the best of those who grant sustenance.
- Practice of Patience:
After giving money to charity, one naturally feels sorrow for a while, but he prefers not to show his sadness to others. This causes him to be patient.
….. یٰاَیُّھَا الَّذِیْنَ اٰمَنُوْا لَاتُبْطِلُوْا صَدَقٰتِکُمْ بِالْمَنِّ وَالْاَذٰی
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 2, Verse: 264 )
O believers! Do not void your charities by reminders of generosity or hurting sentiments…
- Eradicate Miserliness:
Because of the mandatory order of paying Zakat, one has no option but to take out a specific amount of wealth and distribute it amongst the needy Muslims. This yearly regular practice plays a significant role in eradicating miserliness psychologically.
It is needless to say that miserliness has never been regarded as an approved character by Muslim society.
The Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:
….. اِیِّاکُمُ الشُّحَّ فَاِنَّہٗ اَھْلَکَ مَنْ کَانَ قَبْلَکُمْ، اَمَرَھُمْ بِالْظُلْمِ فَظَلَمُوْا، وَاَمَرَھُمْ بِالْقَطْعِیَّۃِ فَقَطَعُوْا، وَاَمَرَھُمْ بِالْفُجُوْرِفَفَجَرُوْا
( Musnad Ahmed, Vol: 2, Page: 393, M )
Beware of miserliness! It destroyed the people before you. It led them to oppress others, so they did. It led them to sever the bond of kinships, so they did. It led them to follow the wrong path, so they went…
- Discourage Begging:
Our religion discourages begging, as it is not a sign for dignified, prosperous and honored people.
Prophet of Almighty Allah (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:
……. لَا تَسْأَلُ النَّاسَ شَیْءًا….
( Musnad Ahmed, Vol: 6, Page: 376, M )
…… Do not beg people…
Therefore, because of Zakat, needy people abstain from begging, since they would be helped anyway.
- Fighting Poverty:
Poverty is one of the biggest problems in our society. Sometimes it causes robberies, killings, and other criminal activities. At the time of a financial crisis, if one has no way out, then he sometimes resorts to the last stage and attempts suicide.
Realizing the dire consequences of poverty, our Beloved Prophet of Almighty Allah (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:
کَادَ الفَقْرُ اَنْ یَّکُوْنَ کُفْرًا
( Shoabul Iman, Vol: 5, Page: 266, M )
Poverty may lead to disbelief..
Without any mere doubt, the system of paying Zakat helps positively by fighting poverty and giving poor people a chance to overcome their financial crisis and restart a joyable, respected and prosperous life.
- Strengthen Relationships:
The system of Zakat promotes love, humanity, and brings the people close to one another.
The Prophet of Allah (Peace be upon him) said:
…. تُخْرِجِ الزَّکٰوۃَ مِنْ مَّالِکَ فَاِنَّھَا طُھْرَۃٌ تُطَھِّرُکَ وَتَصِلُ اَقْرَبَآءَکَ
( Musnad Ahmed, Vol: 3, page: 596, M )
Pay Zakat on your wealth, because it cleans you and brings your family members close to each other…
- Way to Thank Almighty Allah:
For the blessings of life, one may thank Almighty Allah using his tongue. However, with the bounties of wealth, one can thank his Lord by giving a portion of his wealth to charity.
- Promoting Divine Attributes:
Feeding hungry people, helping poor people, and providing facilities to unfortunate people are the Attributes of Almighty Allah. By paying Zakat, one has an opportunity to adorn himself with these divine qualities.
Our Beloved Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:
اَلَا اِنَّ حُسْنَ الْخُلُقِ خُلُقٌ مِّنْ اَخْلَاقِ اللّٰہِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ
( kanzul Ummal, Vol: 1, Page: 3275, M )
Remember! Indeed the best quality is the quality of Almighy Allah.
There is no mere doubt that the ways of Allah the Exalted are best. The Holy Quran says:
…. صِبْغَۃَ اللّٰہِ وَمَنْ اَحْسَنُ مِنَ اللّٰہِ صِبْغَۃً
( Holy Quran, Chaper:2, Verse:138 )
Hue of Allah. Whose hue is better than Allah…
- Financial Stability:
Financial stability of a country depends partially on swift movements of wealth from one hand to the other. That is why if there is enough peace, people spend their wealth and the country financially gets stronger. Because of the concept of Zakat, people have to take out a limited portion of their wealth regardless of the appearance and political condition of the country.
On the other hand, when the Zakat money is distributed amongst the poor and needy people, they, in turn, spend the money quickly to fulfill their basic needs. Thus, the process of Zakat plays a great role in pushing the wheels of financial machines ahead.
- Security of Wealth:
WHO PAYS ZAKAT
By the extraordinary grace of Allah the Exalted, we have discussed the importance of paying Zakat and its far-reaching effects on the Muslim Society in the previous chapter.
Here we will describe the necessary conditions for one to be eligible to pay Zakat.
- CONDITIONS OF ELIGIBILITY:
In principal, Zakat is mandatory upon Muslims. However, practically, it only becomes mandatory upon those who are subject to some specific conditions following the basic Islamic sources.
- Being a Muslim:
Islam is a pre-requisite for Zakat being mandatory on any individual. It is because paying Zakat is an act of following Allah the Exalted, which is only possible by a Muslim. Therefore it is not mandatory on non-believers.
Based on this condition, if one embraces Islam, he would not be asked to pay Zakat on the wealth he previously owned. Allah the Exalted says:
قُلْ لِلَّذِیْنَ کَفَرُوْا اِنْ یَّنْتَھُوْا یُغْفَرْ لَھُمْ مَا قَدْ سَلَفَ
( Holy Qur’an, Chapter: 8, Verse: 38 )
Say to the unbelievers, if they desist, their past would be forgiven.
- Being Adult and Being Sane:
Therefore, Zakat is not mandatory on a child or an insane person.
( An adult means when a boy has his first semen and a girl has her first period. )
Beloved Prophet of Almighty Allah (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:
رُفِعَ الْقَلَمُ عَنْ ثَلَاثَۃٍ: عَنِ الصَّبِیِّ حَتّٰی یَحْتَلِمَ، وَعَنِ الْمَعْتُوْہِ حَتّٰی یُفِیْقَ وَعَنِ النَّاءِمِ حَتّٰی یَسْتَیْقِظَ
( Sunan Kubra Baihiqui, Vol: 8, Page: 471, M )
Three persons are forgiven (his sins would not be recorded in these circumstances); a child until he becomes an adult, an insane person until he becomes sane, and one who is sleeping until he wakes up.
- Being Free:
Zakat cannot be mandatory on a slave, because legally his wealth belongs to his owner. Shaikh Ibn-e-Umar (May Allah be pleased with them both) said:
لَیْسَ فِیْ الْمُکَاتِبِ وَلَا الْعَبْدِ زَکَاۃٌ حَتّٰی یَعْتِقَا
( Musannaf Ibn-e-Shaiba, Vol: 3, Page: 51, M )
Zakat is not mandatory on a slave who made an agreement with his boss, or any other slaves until they become “free”.
- Having Wealth up to Nisab:
“Nisab” is a terminology frequently used in Islamic Jurisprudence. It implies a certain level of wealth
which varies from one kind to another. During the discussion about wealth and its different types, it will be described in detail.
However, hoping to clarify the topic, following Hadith is placed here:
According to Shaikh Abu Saeed Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him), our Beloved Prophet of Almighty Allah (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:
لَیْسَ فِیْمَا دُوْنَ خَمْسِ اَوَاقٍ مِّنَ الْوَرَقِ صَدَقَۃٌ ……
( Bukhari, Vol: 2, Page: 529, M )
…. Zakat is not required on less than five Awaq.
One ‘Awaq’ is equal to fourty Dirham. Therfore, one who has less than two hundred Dirham, should not pay Zakat on it.
- Having wealth in possession:
It’s a pre-condition, not only does one’s wealth have to be so insecure, but it should be in possession too.
Shaikh Ali (May Allah be pleased with him) narrates:
لَا زَکَاۃَ فِیْ مَالِ الضِّمَارِ
( Badae, Vol: 2, Page: 13 )
There is no Zakat on wealth that is not possessed.
Based on this condition, there would be no Zakat on wealth that was lent to someone. However, after receiving it back, one must pay Zakat for the previous year if its return was expected, and if its return was not expected, then Zakat does not have to be paid.
قَالَتْ عَاءِشَۃُ رضی اللہ عنھا: لَیْسَ فِیْہِ زَکَاۃٌ حَتّٰی یَقْبِضَہٗ
( Musannaf Ibn-e-Shaiba, Vol: 3, Page: 54, M )
Mother of Muslims, Sayyeda Aisha (May Allah be pleased with her) said: There is no Zakat on it until it goes back to his possession.
- Being Wealth Debt-Free:
Therefore, Nisab must be free from any debt. However, after paying off the debt, if the balance reaches up to the Nisab, then one must pay Zakat on the balance.
It is based on the logic that the debt is not one’s own property. Therefore, he is not responsible for paying Zakat on it.
( Fathul Qadee, Vol: 2, Page: 170)
In addition, while delivering a speech, Shaikh Usman (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
ھٰذَا شَھْرُ زَکَاتِکُمْ فَمَنْ کَانَ عَلَیْہِ دَیْنٌ فَلْیُؤِدِّ دَیْنَہٗ حَتّٰی تَحْصُلَ اَمْوَالَکُمْ فَتُؤَدُّوْنَ مِنْہٗ زَکَوٰۃً
( Muatta: Shaikh Imam Malik, Vol: 2, Page: 105 )
This is the month of your Zakat. Therefore, if one owes something, he should pay it off, so that you can easily calculate your own wealths and pay Zakat on them.
More clearly, Shaikh Ata bin Abi Rabah (May Allah be pleased with him said:
….. لَیْسَ عَلٰی دَیْنٍ زَکَاۃٌ
( Musannaf Abdur Razzaque, Vol: 4, Page: 71, M )
There is none on debt…
Allah the Exalted has accepted being in debt as a valid reason for receiving Zakat. Logically, how come the one who is eligible to receive Zakat legally, also pay Zakat ?
Allah, the Exalted says:
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 9, Verse: 60)
….. Zakat are for…debtors…
However, if the debt is a kind that would not usually be demanded for, like Mehr money or vows to charity, etc., then this type of debt will not bar the Zakat from becoming mandatory on any individual.
- Being Free from Basic Needs:
Nisab must be free from basic needs like dresses, house for living, car for personal use, books for an educationist, machines for mechanics, etc.
This condition is based on an obvious, logical thought that one who only has his basic needs is not considered a rich person, while Zakat is mandatory only upon rich people.
( See, Badae, Vol: 2, Page: 16)
As mentioned earlier, explaining the system of Zakat, our Beloved Prophet of Almighty Allah (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:
….. فَاَخْبِرْھُمْ اَنَّ اللّٰہَ فَرَضَ عَلَیْھِمْ زَکٰوۃً تُوْخَذْ مِنْ اَمْوَالِھِمْ وَتُرَدُّ عَلٰی فُقَرَاءِھِمْ….
( Bukhari, Vol: 2, Page: 528, M )
…Tell them that Almighty Allah has prescribed upon them Zakat that would be taken from their wealth and turned back to poor people…
In addition, our Beloved Prophet of Allah (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:
لَیْسَ عَلَی الْمُسْلِمِ فِیْ فَرْسِہٖ وَغُلَامِہٖ صَدَقَۃٌ
( Same Reference, Vol: 2, Page: 531, M )
A Muslim is not responsible for paying Zakat on his slave and horse.
The above illuminous Hadith clearly indicates that the basic needs must be excluded from being liable to be paid Zakat on.
- Being Able to Increase:
This is an additional condition for Zakat to become mandatory upon the owner of the wealth. It is based on the logical explanation of Zakat as it means an increase in wealth. Therefore, what is able to be increased is only liable to be paid Zakat on.
( See Bahar-e-Shariat, Vol: 5, Page: 19 )
Therefore, according to the scholars of the Hanafi school of Jurisprudence, only three kinds of wealth are liable for Zakat:
a. Gold or Silver or equal money in the currency of a country
b. Wealth for business
( See , Bahar-e-Shariat, Vol: 5, Page: 17 )
- Wealth must be One Lunar Year Old:
Zakat is due on any wealth after passing a complete lunar year after becoming owner of Nisab ( مالک نصا ب).
Our Beloved Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:
لَیْسَ فِیْ الْمَالِ زَکَاۃٌ حَتّٰی یَحُوْلَ عَلَیْہِ الْحَوْلُ
( Sunan Kubra Baihiqui, Vol: 5, Page: 516, M )
There is no Zakat on the wealth until a complete year has passed.
However, if the owner of the wealth gets more of the same kind of wealth during the year, then the additional wealth will be added to the initial one, and both will have the same due date to pay Zakat. But if that addition is not part of the same kind, then this new wealth will have its own new lunar year.
( See, Badae, Vol: 2 , Page: 16 )
- Being a Muslim:
- CONDITIONS OF PAYING:
While paying Zakat, one should fulfill its conditions in order to complete the payment in a legitimate manner.
These conditions are as follow:
- Intention (نیت):
During the disbursement of Zakat, a clear intention of paying Zakat is necessary. Our Beloved Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:
اِنَّمَا الْاَعْمَالُ بِالنِّیَّاتِ
( Bukhari, Vol: 1, Page: 3, M )
Indeed actions are being judged based on their intentions.
According to Muslim Scholars, this intention of paying Zakat should be either at the time of giving the Zakat to an eligible person or while setting aside his Zakat. However, if one forgets to have the intention during the disbursement to an eligible person, then he is still allowed to intend his Zakat as long as it is in the hand of the eligible person.
( See, Durr-e-Mukhtar, Vol: 2, Page: 278 )
However, it is not necessary for the payer of Zakat to explain his intention to the receiver clearly. Based on this fact, Shaikh Imam Ahmed Raza (May Allah be pleased with him) has concluded his research saying that if someone sets aside his wealth as a Zakat, but hands it over to an eligible person saying it is a gift for them, then this would be considered his Zakat.
( See, Fatawa Razvia, Vol: 10, Page: 67 )
- Empowering (تملیک):
Letting an eligible person to use or benefit from whatever is going to be paid as a Zakat is not enough, but rather, empowering him of the Zakat is mandatory.
Allah the Exalted says:
….. اِنَّمَا الصَّدَقَاتُ لِلْفُقَرَاء
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 9, Verse: 60 )
Zakats are for needy people..
In the above verse, the letter “laam” has been used, meaning “empowering.”
( See, Fiqhul Islami wa Adillatuhu, Vol: 2, Page: 753 )
- Intention (نیت):
- TIMING OF ZAKAT:
In this sub-topic, we will discuss the way of paying Zakat from its different perspectives.
- Exact Time of Zakat:
Zakat becomes mandatory immediately after the completion of one lunar year since the Nisab was registered, without the delay of a single minute.
( See, Same Reference, Vol: 2, Page: 753 )
- Time of Payment:
Timing for the payment of Zakat depends on the nature of commodities one intends to set aside as Zakat.
Therefore, Zakat would be due once a year on gold, silver, money, business mercantile, and animals.
However, it is due on each season of produce. For example, if an agricultural land is being used twice or thrice to grow different types of vegetables or fruits yearly, then Zakat is due each time the produce is ready.
Allah the Exalted says:
….. وَاٰتُوْا حَقَّہٗ یَوْمَ حَصَادِہٖ…..
( Holy Quran, Chapter: 6, Verse: 141 )
…. And pay is due on the day of harvesting133
- Paying Ahead of Time:
Obviously, Zakat is due upon the completion of a full lunar year on any wealth. However, withdrawing Zakat during this period is allowed.
Sayyeduna Ali (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
….. اِنَّ الْعَبَّاسَ سَأَلَ النَّبِیَّ صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم فِیْ تَعْجِیْلِ الصَّدَقَۃِ قَبْلَ اَنْ تَحُلَّ، فَرَخَّصَ لَہٗ فِیْ ذٰلِکَ
( Abu Dawood, Vol: 5, Page: 27, M )
Sayyeduna Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) asked the Prophet of Allah (Peace be upon him) about taking out the Zakat before its due date, and he was permitted to do it…
However, if one pays Zakat on his wealth ahead of time, then he should calculate the exact figure of the Zakat when it is actually due. In case he has paid less than the actual figure, then he must pay the remaining balance promptly. But if he paid more than the actual figure and had the intention of calculating for the upcoming year in case of exceeding the amount due, then it would be counted according to his intention.
( See, Bahar-e-Shariat, Vol: 5, Page: 25 )
- Loss of Wealth:
If all the wealth is lost after Zakat has become mandatory on it, then one is not liable for paying Zakat anymore. However, if only a portion of wealth is lost, then Zakat must be paid proportionally.
According to the Hanafi School of Jurisprudence, Zakat is also part of the wealth that has been lost. Therefore, in the absence of that portion, Zakat would be considered void.
(See, Badae, Vol: 2, Page: 33 )
- Exact Time of Zakat: