Role of Waqf in Sustainable Economic Development and Poverty Alleviation: Bangladesh Perspective

Masoud Ahmad


Waqf is one of the sources of Islamic Economic system. It refers to the voluntary charity which has unique presence in Islam. Islamic law is the first law ever that defines and regulates Waqf as a civil societal institution. It started since the time of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) himself. Waqf before Islam was always a religious exercise when a rich person assigns a property to the temple and monks would use it for the temple expenses. In present, it has proved around the globe that Micro Credit and Safety Net Program are not successful in reducing poverty and income inequality. In this context, Waqf can be one of the vital alternatives alongside Zakah because early history indicates free education, scholarship, orphanage, free treatment etc as provided by Waqf based institutions. But current scenario shows that, Waqf based institutions are not growing at a considerable level. If we really want to do something for the needy and the poor, we have to revive this much needed institution. This paper shares and explores the current status of the Waqf sector in Bangladesh from socio-economic perspective and underlines the areas that need a fresh look for revitalization and proper utilization of Waqf. The paper also tries to assess the role of Waqf in sustainable economic development and reducing poverty in the context of Bangladesh. There are some specific suggestions and recommendations that deserve serious consideration for the development of Waqf in the country.

Keywords: Waqf, Economic development, Poverty alleviation, Bangladesh.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3240 ISSN (Online)2224-3259

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