Zakat ul Fitr

Zakat ul Fitr (Fitrana)

Zakat ul Fitr (fitrana) is charity given to the poor at the end of the fasting month of Ramadan. Alkhidmat Foundation Pakistan suggest that $4.93 is given for each member of the household – including children, adults, servants etc – before the day of Eid. Donate your Zakat ul Fitr (Fitrana) here:


The word Fitr means the same as Iftar, breaking a fast and it comes from the same root word as Futoor which means breakfast. This is a duty which is wajib (required) of every Muslim, whether male or female, minor or adult as long as he/she has the means to do so. According to Islamic tradition (Sunnah), Ibn ‘Umar said that Muhammad made Zakat al-Fitr compulsory on every slave, freeman, male, female, young and old among the Muslims; one Saa` of dried dates or one Saa` of barley. [Sahih Bukhari – Arabic/English, vol. 2, p. 339, no. 579] The head of the household may pay the required amount for the other members. Abu Sa’eed Al-Khudree said: On behalf of our young and old, free men and slaves, we used to take out during Allaah’s Messenger’s (upon whom be God’s peace and blessings) lifetime one Sa` of grain, cheese or raisins”. [Sahih Muslim – English transl. vol. 2, p. 469, no. 2155]


The significant role played by Zakat in the circulation of wealth within the Islamic society is also played by the Sadaqat al-Fitr. However, in the case of Sadaqat al-Fitr, each individual is required to calculate how much charity is due from himself and his dependents and go into the community in order to find those who deserve such charity. Thus, Sadaqat ul Fitr plays a very important role in the development of the bonds of community. The rich are obliged to come in direct contact with the poor, and the poor are put in contact with the extremely poor. This contact between the various levels of society helps to build real bonds of brotherhood and love within the Islamic community and trains those who have, to be generous to those who do not have.


The main purpose of Zakat ul Fitr is to provide the poor with a means with which they can celebrate the festival of breaking the fast (`Eid ul Fitr) along with the rest of the Muslims. Every Muslim is required to pay Zakat ul Fitr at the conclusion of the month of Ramadan as a token of thankfulness to God for having enabled him or her to observe the obligatory fast. Its purpose is: As a levy on the fasting person. This is based on the hadith: The Prophet of Allah said, The fasting of the month of fasting will be hanging between earth and heavens and it will not be raised up to the Divine Presence without paying the Zakat ul Fitr.


Zakat ul Fitr is only Wajib for a particular period of time. If one misses the time period without a good reason, he has sinned and cannot make it up. This form of charity becomes obligatory from sunset on the last day of fasting and remains obligatory until the beginning of `Eid Prayer (i.e. shortly after sunrise on the following day). However, it can be paid prior to the above mentioned period, as many of the Sahabah (companions of the Prophet) used to pay Sadaqah ul Fitr a couple days before the `Eid. After the spread of Islam the jurists permitted its payment from the beginning and middle of Ramadan so as to ensure that the Zakat ul Fitr reached its beneficiaries on the day of `Eid. It is particularly emphasized that the distribution be before the `Eid prayers in order that the needy who receive are able to use the fitr to provide for their dependents on the day of `Eid.

Nafi` reported that the Prophet’s companion Ibn ‘Umar used to give it to those who would accept it and the people used to give it a day or two before the `Eid. [Bukhari – Arabic/English, Vol. 2, p.339, no. 579] Ibn ‘Umar reported that the Prophet ordered that it (Zakat ul Fitr) be given before people go to perform the (`Eid) prayers. One who forgets to pay this Zakat ul Fitr on time should do so as soon as possible even though it will not be counted as Zakat ul Fitr.


The amount of Zakat is the same for everyone regardless of their different income brackets. The minimum amount is one sa` (four double handfuls ) of food, grain or dried fruit for each member of the family. This calculation is based on Ibn ‘Umar’s report that the Prophet made Zakat ul Fitr compulsory and payable by a sa` of dried dates or a sa` of barley. The Companion of the Prophet, Abu Sa`eed al-Khudree said, “In the Prophet’s time, we used to give it (Zakat ul Fitr) as a sa` of food, dried dates, barley, raisins or dried cheese”. [Bukhari – Arabic/English vol. 2, p. 340, no. 582] . According to the majority of Sunni scholars One Sa’a is approximately between 2.6 Kg to 3 Kg. The distribution of Zakat ul Fitr is the same as that of Zakah, and is included within its broader sense. Those who may receive Zakat al-Fitr are the eight categories of recipients mentioned in Surat Al-Tawbah, [9: 60]. They include:

  1. The Poor
  2. The Needy,
  3. Collectors of Zakah,
  4. Reconciliation of Hearts,
  5. Freeing Captives / Slaves (Fee Al-Riqab),
  6. Debtors
  7. Sadaqa in the Way of God’s Holy service (Fee Sabeel illah)
  8. The Traveler.

Zakat ul Fitr must not go for building a mosque, or a school or for other things. It must go to the above-mentioned categories. The Zakat ul Maal cannot be used for such things either.

Appeal for Orphans