Baitul Maal


Asalam Alaikum: I would like to get some information on the Baitul Maal for eg how it originated, regulations, islamic law pertaining to it etc


Wa Alaikum As Salaam,

The Baitul Maal is a department where the common properties of the Muslims are deposited and used for their betterment and for all needs and necessities of the Muslims. It is often referred to as ‘The state treasury’ or ‘Exchequer’.

It is considered to be the collective property of the members of the Islamic Government, and no one has a monopoly or exclusive authority over it. In Al Hidayah it is written, ‘The wealth of the Baitul Maal is the wealth of the general Muslims.’

Many scholars have stated that the Baitul Maal was established during the time of Abu Bakr (R.A), however, in principle, this system of collecting and distributing wealth to the Muslims (to fulfil their needs) had been established by the Prophet (s.a.w) himself. In order to meet the necessities of the Muslims, the Prophet (s.a.w) appointed Bilal (R.A) to borrow money and to arrange the payment at the appointed time. Bilal was also made responsible of looking after the safe-keeping of grains and other foodstuff that came for the sake of the poor Muslims.

When Abu Bakr (R.A) was appointed the khalifah, he officially established a department known as the Baitul Maal in a building, and appointed someone to take charge of it. The purpose of the division was to collect monies etc. which will then be used to fulfill the needs/necessities of the Muslims and also be given to those who were working for the Islamic state in any given department.

The sources of revenue for the Baitul Maal are:

· Zakaat- Amount paid by Muslims in the different types of wealth.

· Ushr- 5% or 10% paid on crops grown by Muslims.

· Khiraj- Tribute paid to the Islamic Government by non Muslims on their agricultural lands.

· Jizyah- The amount non Muslims pay to the Islamic Government when in a fully Islamic State.

· Khums- One fifth of the spoils of war.

· Sadaqaat- Charity

· Awqaaf- Endowments etc.

· Other revenues which come to the Islamic State.

From the Baitul Maal, monies will be given to those who deserve Zakaat. The monies will be taken out from the Zakaat fund which has been given to the Baitul Maal by well-to-do Muslims.

From other general income like that of Jizyah, Khiraj etc. expenses will be taken out which will be spent on things that are beneficial for the Islamic State and for all other facilities, public utilities, schools, hospitals, mosques etc.

And Allah Knows Best.

Mufti Waseem Khan.