You are here: Home » Current Affairs » News » National
Business Standard

Manmohan unveils agency to develop Waqf property

Amendment to Act to provide enabling environment for development and utilisation of waqf lands for welfare of minorities

BS Reporter  |  New Delhi 

Ahead of the general elections, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh unveiled the Waqf Development Corporation Limited (NAWADCO), a new central public sector enterprise under the Ministry of Minority Affairs, on Wednesday.

Reports from the Karnataka government indicate major irregularities had taken place between 2001 and 2012 while transferring waqf land to private parties through mutation, which caused a loss of around Rs 2 lakh crore to the exchequer. It was found waqf properties had been misused, sold and transferred with their proceeds unaccounted for, across the country.

The government stepped in and passed the Waqf (Amendment) Act, 2013, which is expected to make administration of waqf properties transparent and provide an environment for development and utilisation there for welfare of the minority community.

The creation of a Rs 500-crore NAWADCO is structured to facilitate and mobilise financial resources for the development of Waqf properties for community development purposes in joint ventures with state/Union Territory waqf boards and mutawallis (managers). Waqf boards and mutawallis had no resources to develop the property for community purposes till now.

NAWADCO has been set up on a recommendation of the Sachar committee. India has the largest number of waqf properties in the world. There are 490,000 registered waqf properties and the current annual income from these is about Rs 163 crore. The Sachar committee has estimated such properties, if properly developed, with a minimum return of 10 per cent, would be able to generate at least Rs 12,000 crore per annum.

“Waqf” means the permanent dedication by a person professing Islam, of any movable or immovable property, for any purpose recognised by the Muslim law — auspicious, religious or charitable.

The person who has dedicated the property of movable or immovable for any of the above categories is called “Wakif” or donor. Once a property is dedicated the donor loses all rights over the land and such property cannot be alienated, mortgaged or transferred without the prior permission of the Waqf Board.

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Thu, January 30 2014. 00:24 IST