Zakat Vs Tax

The forth pillar of islam, zakat is that part of yearly income which is obligated for every muslim to be paid. Zakat must not be understood as tax. Zakat is that part of maal which is given in the name of ALLAH to purify the possessions and earnings.

The total amount to be paid in zakat is only 2.5 percent of all that comes under nisab. If someone owns something but that remains below nisab level, such a person does not have to pay zakat but he is entitles to get it if he is poor enough to not even earn bread for two times. Matter of zakat is discussed every now and then with great details by giving the religious and quranic verse and ahadith. But still no discussion can make the people pay their due share of zakat in fear that their money may shrink down. Such people should think at least twice before having such thoughts. We people pay willingly or unwillingly, knowingly or unknowingly the amount of tax which is imposed on us by govt. and which we ay on every commodity we buy.

Zakat and tax are not same. Zakat is very small part of yearly income while tax is a huge share of monthly income one earns. Below are given some points that differentiate between zakat and tax.

1: zakat is the due share of total amount to be paid once within one Islamic year. While tax is what is counted in total in one fiscal year but it is paid on every commodity as well as paid as taxes specified by govt. in every legal and authorized act or buying or selling.

2: zakat’s purpose is to care for the poor people of the society while the tax collection of the country is used for the projects which do not directly or indirectly benefit poor people.

3: zakat cannot be used in any project which cannot benefit poor people. it is strictly to be used by the govt. for the poor people as an obligation while taxes are not a necessary obligation to be used for the betterment of the poor lot of the society.

4: there is a proper way and procedure which is defined and strictly followed for tax deduction while there is not strict system for zakat deduction as such in many muslim countries and those who have it, they do not successfully utilize it because of the various sects and their own made philosophies. Shias do not pay zakat so many people fill up the forms showing themselves shias and even from banks they save their money to be paid in zakat.

5: taxes are used and eaten up by the men in power since there is no check and balance for the security of the public money, zakat cannot be eaten up that easily since zakat is that part of money which has to be used for the betterment of the society at large.

6: zakat eradicates poverty while tax increases in many folds.

Hence, people pay taxes happily but they avoid paying zakat which is lesser than taxes and better in use than the taxes.
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