Honorarium soon for Imams and Mouzans

Honorarium soon for Imams and Mouzans

Besides Peshimams and Mouzans the others who will be eligible to receive honorarium are Aleems, Moulvis, Hafeezs, and Nazirs. The scheme is coming into effect from the current financial year 2011-12 with a budgetary allocation of Rs five crore.

Thousands of Islamic religious professionals will be benefited by the scheme in Karnataka and it may become a model for other States as well. As per the details of the scheme, it will be applicable to religious professionals working in institutions registered with the Karnataka Wakf Board. The service matters of Imam. Aleem, Hafeez and Mouzans will have to be decided by the respective Wakf registered institutions and honorarium will be credited in the bank accounts of the beneficiaries.

According to a notification, Aleems and Moulvis will get the highest honorarium of Rs 3,000, followed by Hafeez (Rs 2,850), Nazir (Rs 2,700) and Mouzan (Rs 2,400). They will also get a medical allowance of Rs 100 each per month. It has been made clear that the Wakf Board will pay the honorarium till the institutions concerned where the beneficiaries have been employed become economically strong enough to meet the honorarium from their own resources and income.

However, the Board will have to select the beneficiaries for payment of honorarium not exceeding the amount earmarked in the budget. In the current year, the number of beneficiaries should match the amount of Rs five crore and in the coming years, the State may increase the allocation.

Scholars’ panel

In order to ascertain religious knowledge, educational qualification, and the eligibility for their recruitment to the respective posts, the Wakf Board will have to constitute a committee consisting of scholars of different schools of Islamic thought. The eight-member committee will be headed by Chief Executive Officer of the Board and will have one each scholar each from Islamic schools of thought, namely Deoband, Bareily, Nadva, Shia, Shafi, and Ahle-Hadees. Assistant Secretary of the Board will be the convener of the committee.

The payment of honorarium to Islamic religious professionals is not the brainchild of the Yeddyurappa government. The issue has been pending for long and the government has seized the opportunity apparently to exhibit its minority-friendly credentials.

Acting on a petition of the All India Imams Association, the Supreme Court had ordered  payment of honorarium a few years ago. The Union Ministry of Minority Welfare had in 1997 sent a draft scheme of honorarium to all the state wakf boards.

The Wakf wing of the Union Minority Welfare Ministry had written to the chief secretary, Karnataka last year, asking him to implement the honorarium scheme formulated by the Central Wakf Council.