Private member bill to repeal Waqf Act introduced in Rajya Sabha

Jawhar Sircar (TMC), Syed Naseer Hussain (Congress), Fauzia Khan (NCP), Mahua Maji (JMM), and Manoj Kumar Jha (RJD) also expressed their strong reservation on the bill.

New Delhi: A private member bill by BJP MP Harnath Singh Yadav seeking to repeal the Waqf Act, 1995, was introduced in Rajya Sabha after a division of votes amid strong protests by opposition parties.

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The Waqf Repeal Bill 2022 was moved for introduction by BJP member Harnath Singh Yadav. This was vehemently opposed by members of several parties, including the Congress, TMC, DMK, CPI, CPI (M), and RJD and led to a division of votes.

The introduction of the bill was approved after 53 members, mostly from the treasury benches, voted in favour while 32 opposed the move.

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Yadav introduced the bill after that and it will be taken up for discussion later.

Opposing the bill at the introductory stage, Elamaram Kareem of CPI (M) said Waqf Board runs many religious places and orphanages in the country.

Touching such a sensitive issue will create communal division among the people, he said. “So it should not be admitted. It should be rejected. That is my contention.”

His party colleague John Brittas said the only objective of the bill is to create animosity and polarisation amongst different sections of the population. “This will have a far-reaching impact in society and a member from the ruling party should not indulge in such bills which creates polarisation and disharmony, which is obviously against the tenants of the Constitution,” he added.

Sandosh Kumar P (CPI) voiced similar opinion while opposing the introduction of the bill.

Tiruchi Siva (DMK) also strongly opposed the introduction.

V Sivadasan (CPI-M) said the private member bill is trying to create communal venom.

Jawhar Sircar (TMC), Syed Naseer Hussain (Congress), Fauzia Khan (NCP), Mahua Maji (JMM), and Manoj Kumar Jha (RJD) also expressed their strong reservation on the bill.

The Chair did not allow Rakesh Sinha (nominated) to speak as only those who were opposing the bill were permitted to present their point of views.

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