Hyderabad: The increased prices of gold due to the global Covid-19 lockdown have become a blessing in disguise for families that receive the obligatory zakaat during Ramzan.
Many beneficiaries of the zakaat are receiving more amounts as donation than they usually get every year. This is because the donor has to calculate the amount of zakaat based on the current price of gold. The price of gold compared to last year has witnessed an increase of around 47 per cent. In May last year, it was around Rs 31,000 per tola while this year, it has jumped to Rs 45,000 per tola, traders said.
The zakaat is paid at a rate of 2.5 per cent on the total ‘zakaatable’ assets. It is applicable on a wide range of assets like gold, silver, land property, business stock, cash and bank balances, loans, government bonds, provident funds, company shares and agricultural/factory produce, explained Maulana Hafez Rizwan Qureshi, Qateeb of Mecca Masjid.
Syed Zubair, a software professional from Tolichowki, said the zakaat amount has shot up this year due to the heavy increase in gold prices. “Irrespective of the hike, we are calculating the zakaat on the current amount of gold and distributing among the beneficiaries,” he said.
Lakhs of families across the city donate zakaat in cash or kind every year to the beneficiaries who are mostly from the downtrodden class. “Generally we prefer to buy clothes and distribute. However, this year we are giving money or ration. The increased rate of gold is no deterrent as many are considering it as an opportunity to open their wallets and reach out to the distressed,” he said.
Who must give zakaat?
Anyone who is not indebted and has annual savings of 7.5 tolas gold or 52.5 tola silver or its equivalent in rupees has to give zakaat. Many people prefer giving zakaat during Ramzan because every good deed this month is believed to get 70 per cent more blessings than during any other month.