Waqf

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WAQF

Waqf of usufruct is known in the Maliki School while the other schools of jurists do not consider it. Contemporary life has many forms of usufructs that can be made into Waqf such as driving a car on a toll way or passing through a tunnel or bridge that has fees on it. Similar to that is the use of a parking lot given a Waqf for two hours for the Eid prayers twice a year. These kinds of Waqf need to be recognized by the contemporary Fiqh as well as by the laws of Awqaf in the Muslim countries and communities.  

Most laws of Awqaf, including those in Algeria, Jordan, Sudan, and India do not make any reference to the Waqf of manafi’ (usufruct). The recently proposed law of Waqf in Kuwait recognizes both temporality and usufruct in Waqf. It is still lingering between the government and parliamentary committees.  

Financial rights are also not usually recognized in Waqf by jurists and laws. Modern life has many kinds of these rights, some of them were known in the past but were not of much financial value. For instance, although authorship rights are non-transferable (because transferring them makes a lie) the right to publish and financially exploit the product of an author has become an important business in our days. The same was not known in the past. Patents and other rights related to the product of talents is also an important new dimension in contemporary life. These rights are not dealt with in our classical Fiqh, so is the Waqf of objects that have a repetitive character such as newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals. Similarly are the products of film companies, educational software programs, and many other intangible properties. All such rights and objects must be covered in the Awqaf principle.  

Under the existing Fiqh and laws of Awqaf in most Muslim countries and communities, one cannot, for instance, make a Waqf of ten years subscription to the American Economic Review to the benefit of a university library. It’s true that civil...
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