HYDERABAD: Blaming the TRS government for the loss of prime Waqf lands in Telangana, the Central Waqf Council (CWC) has found fault with the Telangana government for keeping the Telangana State Waqf Board’s record room sealed for nearly four years, without giving access to the room to anyone but the Revenue department officials.
Not even Waqf Board’s staff were given access to the record room, which continues to remain sealed.
As the land records remained inaccessible to the Waqf Board, it kept losing legal cases of encroachment of its lands as it was unable to produce relevant records for proving their claim over a disputed land.
Speaking to Express, one of the CWC members said the Telangana government did not have the right to keep the record room sealed for so many years (since November 2017).
The member said, “Action must be initiated against the existing Board. It is ironical that the Board continues to function, but the record room remains sealed. The State government does not have the power to keep the record room sealed and it can only affect administration-related matters, like appointment of the CEO, as per provisions of the Waqf Act.”
CWC delegation to visit TS
The member will be a part of a CWC delegation that will visit Telangana on a four-day visit from July 28, following a nod for the same from Union Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi.
The CWC member further told Express that even though this was a regular annual visit, it would be significant in the wake of a large number of complaints being received at CWC against the functioning of the Telangana Waqf Board.
“Telangana now has 33 districts, but the Board was not revamped like the other departments and remains understaffed and without proper infrastructure. This is one of the reasons that the existing staff is unable to keep tabs on encroachment of Waqf lands everywhere. By the time one complaint is addressed, the Waqf Inspector will have 2-3 more on his plate,” the member pointed out.
Apart from holding a series of meetings with the Telangana Waqf Board, the CWC delegation will also meet the State’s Chief Secretary and the Principal Secretaries of Minority Welfare and Revenue Departments. “Land grabbing has only increased under the current ruling dispensation in Telangana. If this (sealing of the record room) continues, then no one can safeguard Waqf properties” the member added.
CWC delegation’s visit to take stock of complaints
The visit by the CWC delegation would be significant this time in the wake of a large number of complaints being received at CWC against the functioning of the Telangana Waqf Board