New scheme to fund protection of wakf properties

New scheme to fund protection of wakf properties

The scheme aims at preventing wakf properties from being usurped, encroached, illegally possessed, trespassed, etc, as their value has been increasing abnormally in the market.
According to the scheme of the Minorities Welfare Ministry, the government will offer a maximum financial assistance of Rs 10 lakh for taking  measures for the protection of each wakf property. A Task Force, constituted to study the situation of wakf properties and suggest measures for their protection, had recommended to the government to earmark Rs 100 crore every year for five years in the State budget. Accordingly, the Yeddyurappa government has taken the decision to extend financial assistance for protecting wakf properties and has earmarked Rs five crore in the budget for 2011-12.

The scheme has been approved by the government and it is ready for implementation. Any wakf property management in the State can now apply seeking financial assistance as per the guidelines laid down by the department. The scheme envisages the wakf body to meet 50 per cent of the cost of the proposal for protection of the property and the State will bear the remaining 50 per cent with a maximum grant of Rs 10 lakh. Any wakf property will be eligible to seek assistance. The work should be entrusted to the government agencies such as Nirmiti Kendra, Karnataka Rural Infrastructure Development Corporation, etc, through the Karnataka State Wakf Board.

According to official figures, there are 32,278 wakf properties in the State, spread over 30 districts and more than half of them are kabaristans (graveyards), dargahs, idgahs and mosques.

The government has noticed encroachment of a number of wakf properties and construction of illegal structures. In order to prevent encroachments and to avoid property litigation, the government has felt the need for constructing compound walls or fencing for all wakf properties.

At a recent meeting of the High Power Committee headed by the Additional Chief Secretary and comprising the Development Commissioner, approval was given for the scheme to protect wakf properties and subsequently the scheme has been notified.
Sources here said that in Hyderabad-Karnataka region, a number of wakf properties have been encroached on and the administration is identifying such properties.

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