Only half of zakat goes to Pak poor

December 26, 2009

In addition to “losing” 7 percent of its zakat revenues, Pakistan has failed to spend 50 percent of its zakat in the last two years on the causes for which Pakistan intended it.  The revelation comes from the Pakistani Daily Mail this week:

ISLAMABAD—`Zakat Fund’ is principally meant to help the hardcore poor and deserving people and it is the duty of an Islamic community not just to collect zakat but to properly and fairly utilize it as well.

Unfortunately, the 50 per cent funds collected under the head of Zakat remain unutilized every year due to one or the other reason depriving many deserving and needy people.

The Ministry of Zakat and Ushr has disbursed an amount of Rs 6336.322 million, out of total allocated fund of Rs 13072.319 million, among the needy throughout the country during two years (2006-07, 2007-08). According to official data available here, the figure showed that more than 50 percent Zakat funds remained unutilized during the period.

When contacted, an official of the Ministry told that efforts are being made for further streamlining of the Zakat disbursement system aimed at ensuring full utilization of the funds to the deserving segment of the society. The sources said the total Zakat fund allocation in budget 2009-10 for provinces, Federally Administered Tribal Areas, Northern Areas and Islamabad is Rs 7914.536 million.

They informed that the Punjab Zakat Council has withheld disbursement of monthly stipend ‘Guzara Allowance’ among the needy for the last 20 months, contrary to the Ministry of Zakat and Ushr’s endeavors to mitigate sufferings of the deserving people, .

The sources said the Provincial Zakat Council of Punjab has been summoned by the National Assembly Standing Committee on Zakat and Ushr in its next meeting to brief members on the issue.

Regarding the procedure for granting Zakat to the deserving persons, they said, earlier 60 percent of the budget for regular Zakat programmes was allocated for Guzara allowance and Rs. 500 was disbursed to each “Mustahiq” (deserving) including widows, disabled, unemployed and one who is not a habitual beggar.

Elaborating some projects of the Ministry, they said the ceiling for free medical treatment is Rs. 3000 for indoor and Rs. 2000 for outdoor patients and CZC has enlisted 194 hospitals of national level throughout the country. The sources informed that the government is considering to spend 50 percent amount of the allocated Zakat fund on vocational training during the current fiscal year.

Zakat funds are being distributed among the provinces on population basis and under the formula, Punjab gets 55 percent of the funds, Sindh 23 percent, NWFP 13 percent, Balochistan 4.9 percent and FATA around 2 percent.

This year, the Central Zakat Council has collectively enhanced annual Zakat grant from Rs 24.600 million to Rs 50.600 million for various hospitals and health institutions in the country. The ministry releases Zakat funds every year in the shape of relief grants to the poor deserving patients, affectees of natural calamities, educational stipends for promotion of vocational education in order to eradicate poverty and unemployment in the country, the sources maintained.

The sources said the Provincial Zakat Council of Punjab has been summoned by the National Assembly Standing Committee on Zakat and Ushr in its next meeting to brief members on the issue.

Makes you wonder where the rest of the zakat is going.  Is it just incompetence, or is something more sinister going on?

One comment

  1. ia m so poor person plz and in now a days wents to die i am losing my love plz help me because of money

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