3rd ATAIC Technical Conference
Association of Tax Authorities of Islamic Countries
November 22-25, 2006, Islamabad-Pakistan
Ibn ‘Umar, may Allah be pleased with them, reported:
The Holy Prophet (pbuh) said: (The superstructure of Islam) is raised on
five (pillars): The Oneness of Allah, performance of Prayer, Payment of
Zakat, Fast of Ramadhan, and Pilgrimage (to Makkah)
DEFINITION OF ZAKAT
Islam, being a practical Religion has evolved a complete code of life which has successfully fulfilled
the requirements of the changing times, not only in the social and economic but also other fields,
thus providing a complete way of life(addeen) to its followers.
Of all the beneficial principles propounded by Islam, none are more useful for humanity at large than
those governing income and expenditure. The main sources of income to the Islamic Exchequer are
Zakat, Ghanimh, Jizyah (Tithe) and Kharaj.
Zakat represents the unbreakable bond between members of the community, whom prophet Mohammad
(pbuh) described to be "like the organs of the body, if one suffers then all others rally in response."
One of the most important principles of Islam is that all things belong to God, and that wealth is
therefore held by human beings in trust. Linguistically, zakat has two meaning: ‘purification’ and
‘growth’. Technically, it means to purify one’s possession of wealth by distributing a prescribed amount
to the poor, the indigent, the slaves or captives, and the wayfarer. Our possessions are purified by
setting aside a proportion for those in need, and, like the pruning of plants, this cutting back balances
and encourages new growth.
Zakah does not only purifies the property of the contributor but also purifies his heart from selfishness
and greed. It also purifies the heart of the recipient from envy and jealousy, from hatred and uneasiness
and it fosters instead good-will and warm wishes for the contributors.
As Muslims pay the zakat, they have the genuine feeling that it is an investment and not a debit helping