As Pakistan imposes significant social distancing measures to fight the coronavirus, a Muslim law of generosityor ‘Zakat” is helping to save those out of work.
Like many countries, Pakistan has imposed strict containment measures in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic, including closing schools, preventing public gatherings, and shuttering all businesses that do not sell rations or medicine.
In its latest editorial, the BBC appreciated how amid the pandemic, Pakistanis are helping each other to assist the less fortunate in an inspiring way. Specifically, many are offering zakat, the traditional Muslim charity tax, for daily wage earners who have no paid leave, financial safety net, or health insurance.
The article also mentioned that According to a report by the Stanford Social Innovation Review, the country contributes more than 1 percent of its GDP to charity, placing it among “incomparably wealthier countries like the United Kingdom (1.3 percent) and Canada (1.2 percent) and around twice what India gives relative to GDP.”
A nationwide study found that 98 percent of Pakistanis give to charity or volunteer their time – a number that far exceeds the number of people who are lawfully obligated to offer zakat.
The editorial further stated that as the coronavirus spreads, many Pakistanis have been giving far more than the required 2.5% of zakat. However, others who do not make enough money to qualify for zakat are making as many donations as they can – and so far, these contributions are being mobilized quickly.
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