Wednesday, August 24, 2011

ZAKAT UL FITER



*Bismillahir-Rahmanir-Rahim*'
   {In the name of Allah most Gracious Most Merciful}
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Allah says, in Quran
This day, I have perfected your religion for you,
 completed My Favour upon you,
 and have chosen for you Islâm as your religion.
(Al-Maeda-3)
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Bismillah Walhamdulillah Was Salaatu Was Salaam 'ala Rasulillah
As-Salaam Alaikum Wa-Rahmatullahi Wa-Barakatuhu
{In the name of Allah, praise be to Allah, and may His peace and blessings be upon His messenger}
{ Peace be upon you, and the mercy of Allaah and His blessings}

  http://www.freewebs.com/ilaahimasjid/Zakat_al_Fitr_Grains.jpg

"Indeed whosoever purifies himself shall achieve success, and remembers (glorifies) the name of his Lord and prays" (Quran 87:14-15)

Zakat al-Fitr  is charity given to the poor at the end of the fasting in the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. The word Fitr means the same asIftar, breaking a fast and it comes from the same root word as Futoorwhich means breakfast.

Contents

  • 1.  Classification
  • 2.  Significance
  • 3.  Purpose
  • 4.  Conditions
  • 5.  Rate

 Classification

Sadaqat al-Fitr is a duty which is wajib (required) of every Muslim, whether male or female, minor or adult as long as he/she has the means to do so.

The proof that this form of charity is compulsory can be found in theSunnah whereby Ibn `Umar reported that the Prophet (upon whom beGod's peace and blessings), made Zakat al-Fitr compulsory on everyslavefreeman, male, female, young and old among the Muslims; one Saa` of dried dates or one Saa` of barely. [Sahih Bukhari - Arabic/English, vol. 2, p. 339, no. 579]

The head of the household may pay the required amount for the other members. Abu Sa'eed al-Khudree said, "On behalf of our young and old, free men and slaves, we used to take out during Allaah's Messenger's (upon whom be God's peace and blessings) lifetime oneSa` of graincheese or raisins".. [Sahih Muslim - English transl. vol. 2, p. 469, no. 2155]

 Significance

The significant role played by Zakat in the circulation of wealth within the Islamic society is also played by the Sadaqat al-Fitr. However, in the case of Sadaqat al-Fitr, each individual is required to calculate how much charity is due from himself and his dependents and go into thecommunity in order to find those who deserve such charity. 

Thus, Sadaqat al-Fitr plays a very important role in the development of the bonds of community. The rich are obliged to come in direct contact with the poor, and the poor are put in contact with the extremely poor. This contact between the various levels of societyhelps to build real bonds of brotherhood and love within the Islamic community and trains those who have, to be generous to those who do not have.


Purpose

The main purpose of Zakat al-Fitr is to provide those who fasted with the means of making up for their errors during the month of fasting. Zakat al-Fitr also provides the poor with a means with which they can celebrate the festival of breaking the fast (`Eid al-Fitr) along with the rest of the Muslims.
Every Muslim is required to pay Zakat al-Fitr at the conclusion of the month of Ramadan as a token of thankfulness to God for having enabled him or her to observe the obligator fast. Its purpose is:
  1. As a levy on the fasting person. This is based on the hadith: The Prophet of Allah, upon whom be God's peace and blessings, said,"The fasting of the month of fasting will be hanging between earth and heavens and it will not be raised up to the Divine Presence without paying the Zakat al-Fitr."
  2. To purify those who fast from any indecent act or speech and to help the poor and needy.

The latter view is based upon the hadith from Ibn `Abbas who related, The Prophet of Allah, upon whom be God's peace and blessings, enjoined Zakat al-Fitr on those who fast to shield them from any indecent act or speech, and for the purpose of providing food for the needy. It is accepted as Zakah for the one who pays it before the `Eid prayer, and it is sadaqah for the one who pays it after the prayer.â€[Abu Dawood - Eng. transl. vol. 2, p. 421, no. 1605 - rated Sahih]

 Conditions

Zakat al-Fitr is only Wajib for a particular period of time. If one misses the time period without a good reason, he has sinned and can not make it up. This form of charity becomes obligatory from sunset on the last day of fasting and remains obligatory until the beginning of`Eid Prayer (i..e. shortly after sunrise on the following day). However, it can be paid prior to the above mentioned period, as many of the Sahabah (companions of the Prophet, upon whom be God's peace and blessings, ) used to pay Sadaqah al-Fitr a couple days before the `Eid.

After the spread of Islam the jurists permitted its payment from the beginning and middle of Ramadan so as to ensure that the Zakat al-Fitr reached its beneficiaries on the day of `Eid. It is particularly emphasized that the distribution be before the `Eid prayers in order that the needy who receive are able to use the fitr to provide for their dependents on the day of `Eid.

Nafi` reported that the Prophet's companion Ibn `Umar used to give it to those who would accept it and the people used to give it a day or two before the `Eid. [Bukhari - Arabic/English, Vol. 2, p.339, no. 579]
Ibn `Umar reported that the Prophet, upon whom be God's peace and blessings, order that it (Zakat al-Fitr) be given before people go to perform the (`Eid) prayers.

One who forgets to pay this Zakat al-Fitr on time should do so as soon as possible even though it will not be counted a Zakat al-Fitr. It is considered an ordinary charity." (Related by Abu Dawud.)

 Rate

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The amount of Zakat is the same for everyone regardless of their different income brackets. The minimum amount is one sa` (four double handfuls ) of food, grain or dried fruit for each member of the family. This calculation is based on Ibn `Umar's report that the Prophet, upon whom be God's peace and blessings, made Zakat al-Fitr compulsory and payable by a sa` of dried dates or a sa` of barley.

The Companion of the Prophet, Abu Sa`eed al-Khudree said, "In the Prophet's time, we used to give it (Zakatal-Fitr) as a sa` of food, drieddatesbarley, raisins or dried cheese". [Bukhari - Arabic/English vol. 2, p. 340, no. 582] .

According to Bahishti Zewar by Hakeemul Ummat Ashraf Ali Thanvi,Sadaqatul Fitr is equivalent to 1.75 ser and half Chattank of wheat,barley or flour of wheat or barleyAs one Indian ser equlas 80 tola and one Chttank is 5 tola ,so the given quantity becomes 142.5 tola. Onetola equals 11.6638 gram, hence Sadaqat-ul-Fitr equals 1.67 kg of wheator barley or its price.
 
The distribution of  Zakat al-Fitr is the same as that of  Zakah, and is included within its broader sense. Those who may receive Zakat al-Fitr are the eight categories of recipients mentioned in Surat Al-Tawbah, [9: 60]. They include:
  • (1) the poor
  • (2) the needy,
  • (3) collectors of Zakah,
  • (4) reconciliation of hearts,
  • (5) freeing captives / slaves(fee al-Riqab),
  • (6) debtors
  • (7) sadaqa in the Way of God's holy service (fee sabeel illah)
  • (8) the traveler.

Zakat al-Fitr must not go for building a mosque, or a school or for other thing. It must go to the above-mentioned categories. The Zakat al-maal cannot be used for such things either.


 As For reminding .........
 
ZAKAT-UL-FITR is part of the fast of Ramadan and is characterized by the following elements:
  • It consists of approximately 5.5 pounds of rice, wheat, dates, or similar food items.
  • It is not recommended to give the Zakat ul-Fitr in the form of money, clothes, or any other non-food items. However, the Hanafi School of Thought  allowes to give the Zakat ul-Fitr in monetary form (if one wishes to do so.)
  • It must be given on the day of Eid, which is known as Eid ul-Fitr and signifies the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan. It can also be paid one or two days before Eid ul-Fitr.
  • It cannot be given after the Eid prayer, unless one has a valid reason for such a delay.
  • It should be given on behalf of every Muslim, whether male or female, adult or minor.
 

 
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