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Mushārakah—A Realistic Approach to the Concept in Islamic Finance and its Application to the Agricultural Sector in Pakistan

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AbstractFood is one of the basic necessities that is imperative for human survival. The majority of farmers related to agriculture belong to the lower class and are hence not in a position to fulfil their agricultural needs. Therefore, they must borrow from various sources, e.g., from individuals, organizations, and/or banks, using interest-based lending, which Muslims are prohibited from doing according to the Sharīʿah. Here the concept of mushārakah (participatory mode of finance) is the best option. The present work discusses the application of such transactions to overcome farmers’ financial problems. In this article, the concept of mushārakah is first elaborated in light of classical/contemporary Islamic law literature referring to its rules and regulations followed by a discussion on how mushārakah can be effectively applied to the agricultural sector. The concepts of muzāraʿah (temporary sharecropping contract), musāqah, diminishing mushārakah (al-mushārakah al-mutanāqisah), and customer agency are critically analyzed in such away to make these fit and viable for farmers and Islamic financial institutions.

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