Volume - VII / CHAPTER - 1 / LESSON NO: 11 / PAGE 1 OF 2
USES OF ZAKAAT
Q1: What is meant by the uses of Zakaat?
A. The uses of Zakaat means to give to or spend on those destitute and needy people who deserve Zakaat.
Q 2: How many uses of Zakaat are there?
A. There are seven uses of Zakaat i.e.(1)."Faqeer", (2). "Miskeen", (3). "Aaamil", (4). "Riqaab", (5). "Ghaarim", (6). "Fee-Sabee Lillaah" and (7). "Ibnus Sabeel".
Q 3: Who is "Faqeer" under Shari'ah?
A. "Faqeer" is that person who has some assets but are less than the Nisaab or has assets which reach the standard of Nisaab but are of "Haajat-e-Asleeyah" (essential needs) like a house, cloths etc. Likewise, if he is in debt and after deduction (payment) of the debt from his assets he is no more solvent then he is, in such condition, a "Faqeer" (poor,indigent) even though he has several Nisaabs at a time.
Q 4: Can Zakaat be given to an "Aalim" or not?
A. Giving Zakaat to an "Aalim" (religious scholar) is better than giving to an illiterate person provided he is insolvent. In doing so all care should be taken to ensure that his self-respect is not hurt. Expression even imagination of any sort of disdain or disrespect to 'Aalim will bring about ruin. It should be given to him with respect as "Nazar" (gift, present).
Q 5: Who is "Miskeen"?
A. "Miskeen" (destitute) is that person who has nothing even to eat and clothe himself and is compelled to beg alms.
Q 6: Is it lawful or not for a Miskeen and Faqeer to beg alms?
A. It is lawful for Miskeen to beg alms but unlawful for Faqeer because it is forbidden and unlawful for one who has food and cloth to feed and clothe oneself, to beg alms without any necessity and compulsion.
Q 7: Will giving Zakaat to beggars relieve one of the obligation?
A. There are three kinds of professional beggars i.e. (1). those beggars who are affluent like "Jogi" and "Sadhu" (magician, Hindu ascetic). Giving Zakaat to such people will not relieve one of the obligation and it will remain due. (2).Those beggars who are real "Faqeer" i.e. are insolvent but are healthy and have become habitual of begging instead of earning livelihood. It is forbidden to give them alms as it is tantamount to help flourish the scourge of begging. If they are not given alms, they will be compelled to do some work for their living. However, giving Zakaat to them will relieve one of the obligation as they are after all beggar provided that there is no other Shar'ee restriction and (3).Those ones who are, in fact, poor and indigent and it is also beyond there reach to earn livelihood. It is lawful for such people to beg alms to meet their essential needs. Giving Zakaat to them is one of the best uses of Zakaat and is also highly rewarding act. Rebuking such people is "Haraam" (unlawful).
Q 8: What does "Aamil" mean?
A. "Aamil" is that person who is deputed by the ruler,government to collect Zakaat and Ushr. He should be paid commensurate with his work so that his and his assistants' needs are adequately met. However, this payment should not exceed half of what he collected as Zakaat and Ushr. Being Faqeer is no condition for Aamil.
Q 9: What is meant by "Riqaab"?
A. "Riqaab" means to get a slave freedom by payment. It is Islaam only which helped slaves first of all and worked out ways and means to get them liberty from slavery. Use of Zakaat for their freedom is one of those ways and means. But now slavery is nonexistent that's why there is no need to use Zakaat fund for "Riqaab".
Q10: What does "Ghaarim" mean?
A. "Ghaarim" means the one who is in debt i.e. he is so much in debt that if he clears it his assets will remain no more equal to Nisaab even though his own money is stuck up with the borrowers and he is unable to recover that from them. However, he must not be "Haashmi". This is one of the great favours of Islaam to its adherents,followers that it devised a way to help out the debtors from Zakaat fund. As against this, the banking system which is said to have been established to help debtors defray their debt has done no good to the poor but instead their properties have been confiscated by the banks thereby promoting poverty and destitution.
Q11: What is meant by spending "Fee-Sabee-Lillaah"?
A. "Fee-Sabee-Lillaah" means to spend in the way of Allah. For example, one wishes to take part in "Jehad" (holy crusade) but he has no money and animal to ride on. Such person can be paid from Zakaat fund to serve in the way of Allah even though he is able to earn his living or one wants to perform "Hajj" (pilgrimage to holy Ka'bah) but he has no wherewithal. He can be paid Zakaat for the purpose. However, it is impermissible to beg others for Hajj or a student who is seeking religious knowledge and has devoted himself to it can be paid Zakaat to carry on his religious education even though he is able to earn livelihood. Likewise, spending Zakaat on every good work is "Fee-Sabee-Lillaah". But the condition of "Tamleek-e-Faqeer" must be fulfilled in every case.
Q12: What does "Ibnus Sabeel" mean?
A. "Ibnus Sabeel" means a traveller. This traveller is that one who has become penniless in a foreign land where he has no relative or friend to help him out. Shari'ah has allowed such traveller to seek aid from Zakaat fund even though he has enough wealth at his home. But he should get from Zakaat fund just to meet his needs not more than needed. It is better for him to borrow money if possible or sell any of his belongings like watch to meet his needs thereby to save himself from the disgrace of begging others.
Q13: Can such traveller use Zakaat money on reaching home or not?
A. The traveller who in need got Zakaat for his essential requirements if found his assets like he reached his home can use whatever amount of Zakaat money is still with him.
Q14: Are there also other uses of Zakaat than these seven ones?
A. Yes, the Holy Quran tells of another use of Zakaat than these seven ones: "Walmu-allafati Quloo-buhum" that is those ones who are consoled and comforted by Islaam by meeting their temporal needs even though they be non-Muslims thereby to make them aware of how Islaam teaches to treat one another with love and altruism. But during the caliphate of Saiey-yidinaa Siddique Akbar (may Allah be pleased with him) this eighth kind of people was finished with the consensus of all companions of the Holy Prophet then alive, for, by then Islaam had become dominant and its thruthfulness was dawned on all. So the use of Zakaat in this way was no more needed.
Q15: Should Zakaat be given to all the seven kinds of people or any of them?
A. It is optional for one to give Zakaat to all the seven kinds of people or to some people of one kind or to any of these kinds. However, it is better to give Zakaat money to only one person if it is not equal to Nisaab.
Q16: Is it permissible or not to give one Zakaat money equal to Nisaab?
A. It is "Makrooh" (undesirable) to give one so much Zakaat money that reaches the standard of Nisaab. Zakaat will be deemed to have been paid if given. However, it can be given to that "Faqeer" who is in debt i.e. if his debt is cleared by the said money the remaining balance does not reach the standard of Nisaab or to the one who maintains a family comprising minor children and the share of each child, if money distributed among them, remains less than the Nisaab.
Q17: Who are those to whom Zakaat can not be given?
A. Zakaat can not be given to (1). One's origin i.e. parents, maternal and paternal grand-parents etc. (2). Posterity i.e. son(s) and daughter(s) and grandson^) and grand-daughter(s) etc. (3). Wife can not give to her husband and (4). husband to his wife (5). the one who is solvent and his Nisaab is free from essential needs, (6). to children of a wealthy man, (7). "Bani Haashim" (posterity of the Holy Prophet), even Bani Haashims can not give Zakaat to one another and (8). to "Zimmi" unbeliever.
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