Volume - VII / CHAPTER - 1 / LESSON NO: 10
ZAKAAT OF CROPS
Q 1: What is "Ushr"?
A. To use "Ushri" land for agriculture thereby getting benefit therefrom will make Zakaat compulsory on the produce. This Zakaat on agricultural produce is called "Ushr" (tithe) i.e. one-tenth of the produce is due in most of cases and in some cases half of it (one-twentieth) is charged.
Q 2: What is Ushri land?
A. There are many conditions,circumstances which make land Ushri. For example, Muslims conquered a country and distributed lands among Muslim soldiers or the subjects of that country surrendered and embraced Islam at their own without any resistance or battle or the said land is irrigated by Ushri water. Most of lands of the Muslims in Indo-Pak fall within the category of Ushr i.e. either full Ushr is due on them or half Ushr.
Q 3: Where do Ushr and half Ushr become due?
A. If a family land is irrigated by canal or channel water, Ushr i.e. one-tenth of the produce is due thereon and if irrigated by shoal or bucket then half Ushr (one-twentieth) is due. Similarly, half Ushr is also due on land,field irrigated by the water bought from somebody who is owner of it.
Q 4: Is Ushr due on cereals, dry fruits and vegetables?
A. Ushr is due on every kind of cereals like wheat, barley, millet, paddy etc. dry fruits like walnut, almond etc. and vegetables like melon, water-melon, cucumber, brinjal irrespective of less or more cultivation.
Q 5: Will expenses of cultivation be deducted from produce or not?
A. Ushr or half Ushr, as the case may be, will be due on total produce of agricultural commodities on which Ushr or half Ushr is due without deducting the expenses of cultivation like peasants' labour, ploughing charges and price of seeds etc.
Q 6: Which is Ushri water?
A. Rainy, river, spring and well's water is Ushri water. Ushr will be due on the produce cultivated by such water.
Q 7: Will Ushr be charged from Muslims only or from non-Muslims also?
A. Ushr will be charged from Muslims only. But in case a Muslim buys "Kharaaji" land from a "Zimmi" (a loyal non-Muslim citizen of Islamic state) the land will remain "Kharaaji". Ushr of this land will not be charged from the Muslim buyer but instead Kharaaj will be charged.
Q 8: Which land is called Kharaaji land?
A. There are many conditions,circumstances which render a land Kharaaji. For instance, a Muslim army conquered an enemy state and later returned the land to them just to oblige them or gave it to other non-Muslims or the subjects of that state surrendered negotiating a peace agreement with the Muslim army but did not embrace Islam or a "Zimmi" bought Ushri land from a Muslim or a Muslim bought Kharaaji land or a land is irrigated by Kharaaji water. In all such cases the land is called Kharaaji land.
Q 9: Which is Kharaaji water?
A. The water of the canal dug by non-Muslims before the arrival of Muslims is Kharaaji water or un-believers dug a well but now it is under the control of Muslims or was dug in Kharaaji land, is also Kharaaji. The produce of the land irrigated by such water will be subjected to a certain amount of Kharaaj (not Ushr). It may be half, one-third, one-fourth of the produce or any other quantity thereof may be made compulsory.
Q10: Is Ushr due on minor and insane person?
A. Sanity and maturity are no condition for Ushr's being due. Ushr will be charged on whatever commodity the land of a minor and insane person produces.
Q11: Does Ushr become due on completion of full one year like that of Zakaat or not?
A. Completion of full one year is no condition for Ushr's being due. If cultivation is done on the land more than once in a year Ushr will be due on each cultivation.
Q12: Is Nisaab must for Ushr or not?
A. Nisaab is no condition for Ushr's being due. If agricultural produce, irrespective of perishable or imperishable, is even one kg. Ushr will become due on it. There is also no condition that the cultivator should be owner of the land. If it is an unclaimed land even then Ushr is due on its produce if cultivated.
Q13: Who should pay Ushr if one dies before paying it?
A. Ushr is due on agricultural produce (not on person). If one dies before paying Ushr and his crop is still there, Ushr will be charged on the produce.
Q14: Will Ushr and Kharaaj be paid or not if crop is destroyed anyway?
A. If crop,produce is destroyed completely by flood, torrential rain, fire, hot wind or eaten up by locusts, Ushr and Kharaaj will stand annulled but if some remains untouched, Ushr will be charged on the intact produce.
And in case, the crop,produce is eaten away by animals, Ushr will not be annulled but will remain due. Similarly, if it is destroyed before harvest, Ushr will not be charged otherwise will be due.
Q15: Who should pay Ushr if crop is sold?
A. If crop is sold before it is ready for harvest then the buyer should pay Ushr and if it is ripe at the time of sale then the seller should pay Ushr. In case, both the land and crop are sold or only land is sold and there is also enough time to cultivate the land once more before the completion of one year then Ushr is due on the buyer otherwise on the seller.
Q16: What are the uses of Ushr's and Kharaaj's income?
A. The uses of Ushr and half-Ushr are the same as that of Zakaat which are to follow this lesson. As for Kharaaj, its income is used for the greater good of Muslim community at large. For example, construction of mosques, and other related expenses like stipend of Imaam and Mu'azzin, salaries of teachers of religious seminaries, scholarship to students seeking Islamic education,knowledge and religious scholars (of Ahle Sunnat) who are serving Islaam by doing research work, imparting Islamic knowledge, issuing religious edicts,decrees etc. It can also be used for building bridges, inns etc.