As Ramadan draws to a close and we prepare to say our farewell, we feel both sad at the separation from our guest as well as the excitement for Eid. However there are many of our fellow brothers, sisters and children for whom the day of Eid is just another day of toil and strife. The Shariah has made provision to mend the broken hearts of the less fortunate on this day and it comes in the form of Sadaqatul Fitr.
Sadaqatul Fitr (also known as Fitrah) is compulsory on every Muslim who has the value of Nisab in access of necessities on the day of Eid after subtracting debts. A father will discharge the Sadaqatul Fitr on behalf of his minor children if they have no assets.
The significance of Sadaqatul Fitr can be understood from the following Hadith: “The fast remains suspended between the heavens and the earth until fitrah is discharged.” (Targhib)
Whilst Muslims do discharge their Fitrah, many do so at the last hour. By discharging Fitrah late, it does not fulfil the purpose of benefitting those in need.
Early payment of Fitrah will allow the recipients to prepare adequately so that they too can enjoy a happy Eid. In keeping with this spirit, we urge Muslims to discharge their Fitrah a few days before Eid.
Imam Malik (Rahimahullah) has recorded in Muwatta, that Sayyiduna Abdullah Ibn Umar (R) would send his Fitrah to the one who was in charge of collection two or three days before Eid. (Fathul Bari)