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Please comment on the following question and answer issued by Jamiatul Ulama KZN:

Question and Answer:

Q. Im a student at UKZN and I do not have sufficient money to fund my studies. Will it be okay for me to utilize a bursary to fund my studies that is Zakaat based?

A. In principle, if you do not have in your net-possession the Nisaab* amount i.e. you do not have Zakaatable assets in your net-possession excluding your liabilities which is less than the Nisaab amount, then you are a worthy recipient of Zakaat. As such, if you or any other student is a worthy recipient of Zakaat, he may accept a bursary that is Zakaat based to fund his studies.

*The current Zakaat Nisaab amount is R4586.58 in South Africa.

And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best

(End of  the Jamiat’s answer)



Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’aan Majeed:

“Verily, Sadaqaat (i.e. Zakaat) is only for the Fuqara, Masaakeen, the Aamileen appointed there over, the Muallafah Quloob,  the Riqaab (freeing a certain category of slaves), the ghaarimeen (those drowned in debt), the (stranded) wayfarer,

and Fi-Sabeelillaah.”

The Qur’aan Majeed restricts the distribution of Zakaat to eught categories of recipients. Our purpose in this explanation is not to discuss all the categories. The objective is only to explain that the Jamiat has erred in its fatwa. 

Zakaat is primarily meant for the Fuqara and Masaakeen, for their food and basic needs. University students feature nowhere in any category of Zakaat. The Jamiat’s fatwa is based on a technicality which  the honourable Mufti Sahib has misunderstood. He has not applied his mind, hence  the erroneous fatwa. 

Firstly, a secular university, and that too with evil compounded with the university being a kuffaar one, is an immoral, haraam institution. It is the very antithesis of Islam. It is an educational brothel worse than a ‘normal’ or a conventional brothel.  Everything at a kuffaar university is designed to eliminate Islam. The vile immoral university environment with its preponderance of fisq, fujoor and kufr corrupts Akhlaaq and even eliminates Imaan. There is not a single daleel, not even an apodallic one, on which permissibility could be decreed for attending a kuffaar university. In a nut shell, a university is a place designed to destroy the Deen. Every immorality and immoral perversion the human mind can conjecture is perpetrated at a kuffaar university. 

Parents who send their children to kuffaar university are about the worst scoundrels in the League of Iblees. In their graves they will understand and see the Jahannam they had prepared for their children. If a Mufti issues a fatwa that parents who destroy the Akhlaaq and Imaan of their children by sending them to the educational brothels of the kuffaar are kaafir/murtad, we shall have no objection to such a Fatwa. The rationale underlying such a valid fatwa is that Istihlaal-e-Hataam (making haraam halaal) is KUFR – such kufr which expels from the fold of Islam. 

A university student is NOT among the Fuqara and Masaakeen nor among any of the other categories. It is therefore not permissible to give Zakaat either for a university bursary or even directly to a university student to further his/her secular career notwithstanding the technicality of the student not being a Saahib-e-Nisaab, i.e. not having the Nisaab amount. 

Muftis should apply their minds, be far sighted and understand the implications and consequences of their fatwas.  Issuing a fatwa is not simply to extract a mas’alah from a kitaab and doling it out without regard for the consequences. The problem with the Muftis of this day is that their focus is not on Allah Ta’ala and the Aakhirat. If we ask the honourable Mufti Sahib whether it is permissible to give Zakaat to a prostitute who lacks the Nisaab amount to enable her to ply her ignominious trade, what will be his fatwa? If someone does give Zakaat to a Muslim prostitute who does not have the Nisaab, will the Zakaat be discharged? And, if discharged will it be permissible to give her Zakaat to ply her trade? Any ignorant Muslim will issue a better fatwa than  the Mufti Sahib who  says that it is permissible to give Zakaat to a student to further his secular career in a kuffaar institution akin to a brothel, or Wallaah! worse  tha a brothel. At least the zaani (fornicator) emerging from a brothel and also the prostitute herself  emerge with their Imaan uncorrupted by the kufr indoctrination of the university which is one of the most potent snares of Iblees. 

The Jamiat’s Mufti Sahib has failed to even understand the question. The question does not pertain to discharge of Zakaat.  The question is:  “Is it permissible to use Zakaat for university education or to give it to a  student  to continue his  university education?” Instead of answering the question, the Mufti Sahib goes off at a wide tangent to explain about something about which he was not asked. 

If a prostitute is hungry and has no food, then to give her Zakaat for her food is permissible and the Zakaat will be validly discharged. But to give her  Zakaat to enable her to  pursue her trade  by procuring whatever  haraam artefacts  she requires, in addition to being haraam, does not  achieve the purpose of discharging the Zakaat notwithstanding the technicality of the lack of Nisaab. Allah Ta’ala has endowed Insaan with Aql. It is lamentable that the Mufti Sahib refrains from constructive application of his Aql. 

In exactly the same way will it be permissible to give the student Zakaat for food if he is hungry, but it is not permissible to use Zakaat to pay any food fees charged by the university or for  any expenditure  concomitant to the pursuit of the haraam university career. 

It is essential to understand that it is HARAAM to give Zakaat or to use Zakaat for university bursaries or to give directly to university students for pursuing university careers. Zakaat misused in such haraam avenues remains undischarged and should be paid again.

“Reflect (and derive lesson), O People of Intelligence.” (Qur’aan)

3 Rabiuth Thaani 1437 (14 January 2016)


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