• Welcome to all New Sikh Philosophy Network Forums!
    Explore Sikh Sikhi Sikhism...
    Sign up Log in

India Trustees Sell Wakf Land At Throwaway Prices


Apr 3, 2005
New Delhi: A Minority Affairs Ministry report accessed by CNN-IBN reveals that land belonging to various Wakf boards in India are being misused and even sold at throwaway prices.

The report contains nationwide details of prevailing corruption in Wakf boards. It exposes a nexus involving politicians, community leaders and private developers.

In Maharashtra's Aurangabad district a 14 acre plot of land belonging to Wakf Board was allegedly sold to Nirman Bharati developers for just Rs 8 crore when the actual market rate for it Rs 60 crore. The land was with the board since 1973.

What highlights the possible nexus between the politicians and those in-charge of using the land for the betterment of the Muslims is the fact that Diliprao Deshmukh, a Congress MLC and brother of Heavy Industries Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh was one of the directors in Nirman Bharati, when the deal was signed.

Those who are aware of this practice allege collusion between the trustees and the builder lobby.

"Such blatant sale is common. The trustees are hand-in-glove with builder lobby and Wakf board looks the other way or sometimes even gets a cut," says lawyer Sana Baugwala.

After a furore against the sale, the matter is now pending before the Aurangabad High court.

"I can't talk about this case since it is subjudice. I was Director in the said company for 18 days only," Diliprao Deshmukh told CNN-IBN.

Meanwhile, allegations of sale, shockingly low rental rates, under-hand land deals continue discreetly. The Maharashtra Wakf Board owns and maintains over 23 thousand Wakf properties spanning 92,000 acres. As per a government survey report, 60 per cent of this has been encroached upon.

The three-storey mall, Citi Centre which is worth Rs 300 crore, stands on what used to be an orphanage under the Haji Zakariya Ahmed Patel Mohammadan Orphanage & Asylum Trust.

According to documents with CNN-IBN, trustees of the orphanage in Mumbai Central, sold 13,800 sq m or 3 acres of land for Rs 1 crore in September 2004 to Neel KamalRealtors & Builders Pvt Ltd. Its market rate is estimated to be Rs 100 crore.

When CNN-IBN spoke to the trustees, they defended their decision saying that the land property was sold off for commercial use since it had become a liability to maintain. Since the property was registered under the Bombay Public trust, the sale was allowed. The then Wakf Board CEO MA Aziz ratified the sale.

"The charity commissioner gave permission for the sale of the property to Citi Centre after Wakf Board issued notice," says Haji Ahmed Pathan, Wakf Board member.

The Pir Baghdadi dargah in the heart of Mumbai's Dadar area is also currently under the scanner for allegations of financial irregularities in its lease agreement.



📌 Follow the Official Sikh Philosophy Network Channel on WhatsApp: