From Syed Akbar
Hyderabad, Nov 5: The State Wakf Board is in trouble with about 5000 Muslim institutions with several properties attached to them refusing to register with it.
Section 36 of the Wakf Act 1995 makes it mandatory for management committees of mosques, dargahs chillas and other Muslim institutions to obtain registration with the State Wakf Board. The Survey Commissionerate of Wakfs, which is carrying out the second survey of Wakf institutions in the State after a gap of five decades, noticed that many Muslim bodies which came into existence after the first survey are not registered with the Wakf Board. The violation was more pronounced in Kurnool, Nellore, Prakasam, Medak and Hyderabad districts. Hyderabad city alone has about 400 unregistered Wakf bodies.
"We noticed that in Vizianagaram district about 100 Wakf bodies have failed to register themselves with the State Wakf Board. After a lot of persuation and warnings only a dozen have agreed for registration. The management committees are apprehensive that the Wakf Board will have complete control over the properties once they get registered with it. But we told them that registered wakf properties are more secure from encroachments," assistant survey commissioner (Wakf) MA Hameed Khan told this correspondent.
In the absence of properties not being registered as "Wakf", the Landgrab Court and the AP Wakf Tribunal would not entertain cases of encroachments. The government will also not pay compension in case of land acquisition from such institutions. It will also give scope for management committees of unregistered Wakf bodies to resort to corrupt practices like swindling of funds and sale of properties. The Board will lose revenue as every registered Wakf property has to pay six per cent of its income towards Wakf Fund.
So far in the second survey the wakf properties in the State increased by about 90 per cent both in terms of assets and institutions. The board, which had under its control 35,200 institutions when it was formed five decades ago, is now the proud custodian of 64,222 Wakf bodies spread across the State. The extent of land attached to Wakf institutions has also gone up from 1.33 lakh acres to 1.70 lakh acres. The net value of the Wakf Board is now estimated to be around Rs 65,000 crore, up from the earlier Rs 35,000 crore.
The ongoing second survey of Wakf properties has thus far identified 29,000 new Wakf institutions with landed properties extending to 40,000 acres. The survey has been completed in 15 districts and is at varying stages of completion in Hyderabad, Kurnool, Mahbubnagar, Medak, Rangareddy, Nizamabad and Visakhapatnam districts.
Once the survey is completed in these districts and the unregistered bodies secure registration from the Board, the total number of Wakf institutions and the extent of Wakf land will go up further. It is estimated that another 6000 Wakf institutions will be added to the list when the survey/registration is completed.
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