J&K Waqf Board: Encroachment Or Illegal Occupation Of More Than 50 Percent Of Waqf Properties In Jammu And Kashmir, Andrabi Said The White Paper Will Be Made Public In April – News X

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J&K Waqf Board: Encroachment Or Illegal Occupation Of More Than 50 Percent Of Waqf Properties In Jammu And Kashmir, Andrabi Said The White Paper Will Be Made Public In April
– News X

J&K Waqf Board: In the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, more than 50 percent of Waqf properties are encroached or illegally occupied. Waqf Board Chairman Dr. Darakhshan Andrabi told that the white paper regarding the encroachment of Waqf property will be made public in April next year. The Jammu and Kashmir Waqf Board looks after around 32,000 properties, which include Muslim shrines, mosques, educational institutions across the UT. Of these, about 20 thousand are in Kashmir division and 12 thousand are in Jammu division.

Following the abrogation of Article 370 and the reorganization of Jammu and Kashmir, the Central Government reconstituted the WAQF Board in April 2021 and Dr. Andrabi was appointed as its first chairman, the first woman to hold the post. Immediately after the acquisition, an internal audit of the properties of the Waqf was initiated and a shocking revelation came to the fore.

According to the officials, almost all the Waqf properties were either encroached upon or were in illegal occupation by tenants and lessees who were not even paying rent as per the market rates. As per the previous government records, about 800 acres of Waqf Board land has been encroached upon by various individuals and government organizations in the area.

waqf board has the most assets in srinagar district

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According to official data, there are 19,888 waqf properties in 10 districts of Kashmir division. Srinagar district has the highest number of 4,179 waqf properties, followed by Baramulla 3,224, Budgam 3,152, Anantnag 2,998, Pulwama 2,250, Kulgam 1,398, Ganderbal 1,138, Kupwara 557, Shopian 532 and Bandipora 460.

What did Andrabi say about the assets of the WAQF Board?

Andrabi said files are being prepared to expose the big fish and the white paper will be made public when Waqf Day is celebrated in April next year. Ignoring his words, Andrabi said that all the former chief ministers, who were the heads of waqfs under the old system, are responsible for this loot of public property.

WAQF digitized its assets

Under the new system, the WAQF has already started the process of digitizing and geo-tagging its properties and subsequently uploaded the records of those properties on the Waqf Management System of India (WAMSI) portal.

The WAQF Board has often been in controversy due to political interference as the ruling parties have excessively interfered in its functioning and execution of tasks. The new WAQF board has already sent notices to around 2500 occupants, who are either staying in its properties, or are not paying rent as per norms.

“Given the value of its assets, the Board should be earning much more than it is today. Its assets include commercial buildings, schools, shops and land. But the annual turnover is far below the expected revenue, giving us reasons to increase have to be forced to.” The WAQF board chairman said that the 120% rent hike is a compulsion and that shopkeepers, tenants and lessees of vacant properties will have to pay market rates.

While the work of removing the illegal encroachment of the Waqf is being appreciated from all sides, the people associated with the business world are angry that despite being tenants of the Waqf for decades, efforts are being made to prove them thieves and attack their livelihood. is happening.

Zubair Ahmad, a member of Waqf Market Association, said, “We can find a solution to this problem by negotiating with the Waqf and still we are paying rent to the Waqf with 200% increase. But if the Waqf Board decides unilaterally, we will If everyone is called an illegal occupier, then they will oppose it.”

The Waqf generates a revenue of about Rs 25 crore every year, out of which about Rs 10 crore is spent on the management of its educational institutions, salaries of 1200 employees and financial help to about 800 poor families.

The Jammu and Kashmir government has completed geotagging of 15,109 out of 19,888 waqf properties in the entire Kashmir division. This equates to geotagging around 80% of the existing Waqf properties so far. However, the concerned revenue officials in various districts have reported that many properties included in the list of waqfs either could not be traced, or were recorded as proprietary land, particularly in villages.

The geotagging of Waqf properties in Jammu and Kashmir is part of the “Qaumi Waqf Board Tarkkiyati Yojana” of the Union Ministry of Minority Affairs. The deadline for the project has now been revised from March 2022 to November 2023.

Auqaf [वक्फ] has historically been used more as a political institution than an Islamic institution of charity in Kashmir. For decades, the trust remained under the direct control of the top leadership of the National Conference, which also held political power in Kashmir.

In 2003, the People’s Democratic Party and Congress coalition government took control of the Muslim Auqaf Trust’s properties, renamed it the Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Waqf Board, and passed new laws on how waqf properties should be managed. This arrangement lasted till 2019, when the board was reconstituted under a central law.

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