Direct Interference of the State
Islamic State can intervene on two levels.
(i) Protection of the permanent fundamental Islamic legislations. This field includes the following sectors:
1. Taking the permanent tax (Zakat) which ranges between 2.5-10% of the stored possession (which is not essential for one's living), in every year.
"Of their goods take alms, that so thou mightest purify and sanctify them; and pray on their behalf. Verily thy prayer is a source of secu rity for them: and God is One heareth and knoweth. " (Qur'an, 9:103)
Khums is another revenue of taxation. It is one fifth of the annual excess of one's profit to be taken by the Islamic Government.
"And know that out of all the booty that ye may acquire (in war) a fifth share is assigned to God, and the Apostle, and to near relatives, or phans, the needy, and the wayfarer. " (Qur'an, 8:41)
2. To prevent capital interest or usury.
"Those who devour usury will not stand except as stands one whom the Evil One by his touch has driven to madness.
That is because they say: "Trade is like usury, "but God hath permitted trade and forbidden usury. Those who after rece- iving direction from their Lord, shall be pardoned for the past; their case is for God (to judge): but those who repeat (the offence) are companions of the Fire: they will abide therein (for ever). " ( Qur'an, 2:275)
"O ye who believe fear God, and give up what remains of your demand for usury, if ye are indeed believers. If ye do it not, take notice of war from God and His Apostle: but if ye turn back, ye shall have your Capital sums: deal not unjustly, and ye shall not be dealt with unjustly." ( Qur'an, 2:278-9)
3. Seizing lands and national resources which are not under exploitation by their owners. There is a well-known Islamic rule in this respect: "Land is for whoever cultivates it."1
4. Preventing accumulation and storage of money which is not utilised in the national production. "And there are those who bury gold and silver and spend it not in the way of God: announce unto them a most grievous penalty."2 (Qur'in, 9:34)
5. Protecting the hereditary laws which help I. See "Eqtesaduna" Page 425 onwards, by Sayed Muhammad Baqir AI-Sadr.
2. Ibid p.579 onwards.
in distributing the person's wealth among his relatives, which is a big action against capital inflation.
"Allah enjoins you concerning your children: the male shall have the equal of the portion of two females; then if they are more than two females, they shall have two-thirds of what the deceased has left, and if there is one, she shall have the half;
and as for his parents, each of them shall have the sixth of what he has left if he has a child, but if he has no child and (only) his two parents inherit him, then his mother shall have the third;
but if he has brothers, then his mother shall have the sixth after (the payment oft a bequest he may have beque- thed or a debt; your parents and your children you know not which of them is the nearer to you in usefulness; this is an ordinance from Allah: Surely Allah is Knowing, Wise.
"And you shall have half of what your wives leave if they have no child, but if they have a child, then you shall have a fourth of what they leave after (payment of) any bequest they may have bequeathed or a debt;
and they shall have the fourth of what you leave if you have no child, but if you have a child then they shall have the eighth of what you leave after (payment of) a bequest you may have bequeathed or a debt;
and if a man or a woman leaves property to be inherited by neither parents nor offspring, and he (or she) has a brother or a sister,
then each of them two shall have the sixth, but if they are more than that, they shall be sharers in the third after (payment of) any bequest that may have been bequeathed or a debt that does not harm (others); this is an ordinance from Allah: and Allah is Knowing, Forbearing": (Qur'an, 4:11-12)
6. Preventing wastage of national wealth by luxuries.
"And when We intend to destroy a town, We (first) send Our commandment to the people of it who lead easy lives, but they transgress there in; thus the word proves true against it, so We destroy it with utter destruction." (Qur'an, 17:16)
"And give to the near of kin his due and to the needy and the wayfarer, and squander not (thy wealth) wastefully. Verily the squanderers are the brethren of the satans; and Satan is ever an ingrate to his Lord." ( Qur'an, 17:26-27)
7. Administering and utilising the national
production by using the collective possession field. etc.
8. To prevent gambling, cheating, monoply, "O ye who believe! Intoxicants and gambling (dedication of) stones, and arrows, are an abomination, of Satan's handiwork: eschew such (abomination), that ye may prosper."(Qur'an, 5:90) The Prophet (p.b.u.h.a.h.f.) said: "No one indulges in monoply but a sinful."
Imam `Ali (peace be on him) wrote in his letter to Malik al-Ashtar (governor of Egypt at the time): "Prohibit monoply for the Messenger of God had forbidden it. Therefore, if anyone who indulges in monoply after being warned, should be punished and penalised with no excess." The Prophet (p.b.u.h.a.h.f.) said: "He who cheats us is not one of us."
(ii) There is a special right for the Islamic Government to nationalise or seize part of the possessions of affluent people. This right is practised during national crisis such as wars, etc.
In Imam `Ali's letter to Malik al-Ashtar, were orders which fixed prices. He wrote: "Let selling be with just balances, and prices should cause no unjustice for the seller or the buyer."
Tirmidhi narrated, his source was, Rafi` bin Khadij, that a letter read: (The Messenger of God has forbidden us from something which was useful to us; when one of us had a piece of land we used to rent it for some of its products or money. The Prophet (p.b.u.h.a.h.f.) said: "If any of you has a land, let him offer it to his brother (in Islam) or he should cultivate it").
Ibn Taymiyyah wrote in his book al-Hisbah' ; "The head of State has the right to force people to sell what they possess, in return of its equivalence at the time, when people are in desperate need of it.
When somebody has food which he does not need, while people are starving, he should be forced to sell in return of its equivalent price, and for this reason jurists said: `Those who are in need of food which is possessed by others, can obtain the food without consent of their owners provided the equivalent value is paid.
In the case of demanding a higher price than the normal one, their claim does not hold' "
Adapted from: "Economic Sysytem in Islam Compared with Capitalism and Socialism" by: "Abdul Husain Muhammad"
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