Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Thursday took control over the two Waqf Boards of Uttar Pradesh, namely the Sunni and Shia Waqf Boards. Since the tenure of both these boards had elapsed, and conducting an election for the same at a time when the nation reels under a CoVID-19 pandemic would not be feasible, the Yogi government took matters in their own hands.
The State Waqf Boards are established by the State Governments in view of the provisions of section 13 & 14 of the Waqf Act, 1995. The primary purpose of such Boards is to manage, regulate and protect Waqf properties, which are used only for the betterment of Muslims. The term for an elected Waqf committee is five years.
The Sunni and Shia Waqf Boards of Uttar Pradesh were constituted under the previous Samajwadi rule. While the Sunni Waqf Board’s tenure ended on March 31, the Shia Board’s tenure culminated on May 18. The Yogi administration did not waste a single wakeful moment and took control of both these boards thereafter.
Uttar Pradesh’s Minister for Minority Affairs, Mohsin Raza said the government would be appointing CEO’s for both the boards shortly, so that the working of the board can be looked after by them, under the supervision of Yogi, of course.
“Both the boards were constituted during the previous Samajwadi Party regime and large-scale irregularities have been committed by both the boards while dealing with Waqf properties. Muttawalis (caretakers) of Waqf properties have been appointed without adhering to rules. The government has already recommended a CBI inquiry into this,” said Mohsin Raza.
It is worthy to mention that the outgoing Chairman of the Sunni Waqf Board, Zufar Ahmad Farooqui is in possession of all documents pertaining to the Supreme Court’s decision on the Ram Mandir-Babri Masjid dispute. Further, he also possesses documents pertaining to the approval for the building of a Mosque on a five-acre land at any other spot in Ayodhya, reported Times Now.
In Uttar Pradesh, there are around 3 lakh Sunni waqf properties and 7,225 Shia waqf properties, controlled and administrated by the respective boards.
With the Yogi government now taking control over both these Waqf Boards, it is expected that elections will only be conducted after thorough scrutiny of the working of the two boards in the past. All irregularities will be weeded out, and whether corruption was part of the modus operandi of the boards, will be probed. The recommendation by the government for a CBI enquiry into the working of the boards is a testament to the same.