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Zakah, Waqf & Inheritance

Inheritance is the redistribution of wealth of the deceased. The Islamic law does not allow one to make a will for more than 1/3rd of one’s wealth. The Quran give a detailed account of the Islamic inheritance law in Surah Nisaa from verses 7 to 12. Unlike primogeniture system, where the elder son inherits everything, Islam distributes wealth equally and judiciously amongs all the heirs.

 Zakat is a Qur’anic injuction and is among the faraiz. It comes next only to salat. It is doubly important. On the one hand it is a means of spiritual purification and on the other a way to regain balance and equilibrium in social and economic life. Every rich, adult Muslim who is having wealth above the Nisaab level (a particular mark above which a person is considered rich enough to pay zakah) must pay 2.5% (1/40th) part of his wealth on which a whole economic year has been completed.

Zakat al fitre is fard on every male, female, minor, adult, free or slave. One has to pay the Zakath al Fitr on his behalf and on his dependents’ behalf. Everyone who has a more than one days food extra with him on the night of Eid ul Fitr is eligible to pay Zakat al Fitr. The amount of zakat al fitr wajib on each individual is one sa’ which is equivalent to 2.175 Kg ( 2.75) litres of the staple food of the country, or equivalent cash.

Waqf is a supplementary act of worship where a Muslim gives some of his wealth in the path of god which can be used for the welfare of poor and needy. It is sadaqa jariyah from which the donor continues to derive sawab even after his death. Waqf usually is in the form of immovable property, real estate etc. Indian muslims have tremendous waqf properties at their disposal, which could be used for the welfare of local muslims, but unfortunately nothing of this sort is being done. Let us hope sometimes in the future we will be more sensible. Insha’Allah!

 Please check this page for updates.

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