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Hyderabad: High Court directs Govt to Constitute a Separate Shia Wakf Board

Shi'ite women attend prayers for the Muslim festival of Eid-al-Adha in Baghdad September 24, 2015. REUTERS/Ahmed Saad

In a positive move, the Hyderabad High Court on Thursday directed the Telangana government and its minority welfare department to constitute a separate Wakf Board for Shia Muslims.

A deadline of 6 weeks has been given to finalise the decision.

Justice AV Sesha Sai gave this direction while dealing with a petition filed by Moulana Waheduddin Hyder a representative of Anjuman-E-Alavi Shia Imamia Ithna Ashari (Akhbari).

Akhbari filed a petition, for not constituting a separate Waqf Board for Shia Sect though sections 13 (2) and 13 (2-A) of the Waqf Act, 1995 mandate it to do so.

Akhbari also questioned the failure of the state in nominating the Shia community Muslims into the Board as envisaged under Section 14 of the Waqf Act.

“Hyder has represented to the state government and its minority welfare wing asking them to constitute separate Wakf Board for Shias, the government has not take any decision so far,” Senior counsel P Venugopal told the court.

“As per the Wakf Act, it is mandatory for the government to constitute a separate Board for Shias as15 per cent of total Wakf properties in the state belong to Shias,” he said.

“There are 33, 900 wakf properties in Telangana. In this, 11, 056 Ashoorkhanas, which constitute 33 per cent, belong to Shia community.”