KARACHI: Sindh Minister for Zakat, Ushr and Anti-Corruption Sohail Anwar Sial has said that all those institutions in Sindh getting financial assistance from the department of Sindh Zakat funds have to be audited to verify whether the financial assistance is reaching the deserving and needy persons.

He said that under Section 11 of the Zakat and Ushr Act 2011 annual audit of the Sindh Zakat funds by the auditor general of Sindh was obligatory, including the audit of accounts of the institutions which make deduction or get financial assistance from the Zakat funds, the minister said in a statement.

He also instructed the officials concerned to ensure transparency in distribution of Zakat funds and asked them to ensure that their data was updated and due attention was paid to rectify complaints pertaining to distribution of Zakat funds.

The Zakat and Ushr department in Sindh is an integral component of the poverty alleviation efforts of the government and operating in all districts by providing financial assistance to different segments of the society through District Zakat & Ushr Committees.

Over one billion rupees annually are disbursed among deserving persons through Guzara Allowance to the destitute, widows, and old aged persons.

Similarly educational stipends are regularly paid to deserving university level students while monthly scholarship is paid to students of madressahs for religious education.

Under the Zakat and Ushr Act 2011 free treatment is being provided to poor patients through hospitals and dowry is arranged for marriages of deserving girls and financial assistance is arranged for the poor as well as inmates and trainees of social welfare institutions and one-time financial support to poor persons during the month of Ramadan.

Published in Dawn, October 21st, 2019