What Is Zakah?
The lexical definition of Zakah is blessings, growth, cleanliness and purity. Zakâh is a Mâlî Ibâdah (a worship fulfilled with wealth) performed annually to obey Allah’s command. Zakâh is to give one-fortieth (2.5%) of one’s wealth annually to one of the eight classes of people specified in Qur’ân Al-Karîm.
Who are the recipients of Zakah?
These 8 groups are mentioned in Surah al-Tauba Ayah 60:
“Zakah expenditures are only for the poor and for the needy and for those employed to collect and for bringing hearts together and for freeing captives and for those in debt and for the cause of Allah and for the traveller - an obligation by Allah . And Allah is Knowing and Wise.”
It is not permissible to give Zakah to people who possess the Nisaab amount of wealth.
Who are not eligible to receive Zakah?
According to the Hanafi Madhhab, Zakah may not be given to the following groups:
- To a person’s ascendants (own parents and grandparents).
- To a person’s descendants (own children, grandchildren and great grandchildren)
- To a person’s own spouse
- To the Non-Muslims
- To the rich (those who the Nisaab amount of wealth)
- To a boy who has not yet reached puberty, whose father is rich.
The Amount of Zakah
Zakah is one of the Five Pillars of Islam. An adult, sane, free and debtless Muslim who is in possession of the Nisaab amount of wealth, in excess of their basic needs for a complete lunar year is obliged to pay the Zakâh.
If, within the cause of the year, a person happens to lose the Nisaab amount of wealth, it does not disqualify Zakah. It is sufficient to possess the Nisaab amount at the beginning and at the end of the year. When giving someone Zakah or when putting aside the Zakah amount, a person must intent in their heart. It is not enough to utter the intention without having consciousness in the heart.
You can send your Zakah to the needy in Africa.
You may inquire about your Zakah calculations from the numbers below:
Zakah on Agricultural Produce: Ushr
- The Zakah for the agricultural produce is called Ushr which means one tenth in Arabic. Giving one tenth of the produce as Ushr is a Fardh that is established by Ayat (verses), Hadeeth and Ijma. In Surah al-Baqarah ayah 267, Allah (Sunhanahu.) says:
“O you who have believed, spend from the good things which you have earned and from that which We have produced for you from the earth. And do not aim toward the defective therefrom, spending while you would not take it except with closed eyes. And know that Allah is Free of need and Praiseworthy.”
- If the fields are watered by rain, stream or brook, the Ushr amount is one tenth. If certain amount is paid for the water or the water needs to be carried by animals for a whole year or in most of it, then the Ushr is given as one twentieth from total produce. This is because, the production phase in the latter situation is more difficult and costy.
Ushr is Calculated Without Subtracting The Expense during Production of the crops
- The cost of seeds or the labour cost cannot be subtracted from Ushr. The owner of the field is not required to be of sound mind, baligh (mature), or rich. Ushr is not associated to the owner of the field but the field itself. Meaning that even if the owner of the field is not of sound mind, is not baligh or poor – they are still obligated to give Ushr.
- While Zakah for things such as gold, silver and trade goods is given once a year; Ushr is given at every harvest. While Zakah is given after one lunar year, this period may be less than a year for Ushr depending on the harvest time.
- Ushr is given for produce such as: honey, walnuts, hazelnuts, peanuts, almonds, olive oil as well as similar oils, cotton, acorns, flax seeds, sugar cane, sugar beet, tea leaves and other similar crops.
- Ushr is given from the fruits like meadow grass, mulberry, basil leaves, wheat, corn, rice, chickpeas, lentils, broad beans, beans, onions, garlic, melons, watermelons, cucumber, grapes, figs, apples, pears, peaches, and plums.
- Ushr is also given for animal feed such as: oats, vetch, and tare.
If a grape vine, from whose fruits Ushr is give, grows around a fruit tree, or if onions or garlic etc are planted in between the grapes, they also are subject to Ushr, meaning that Ushr must be given from the fruits of the fruit tree as well as the onions and garlic.
- If in a field, some plants grow naturally, then it too must be included when giving Ushr as well. Briefly Imam-i Azam said: Ushr is Fardh upon all the crops harvested from the fields – no matter if they be few or plenty.
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