March 22, 2020 4:27:15 am
AAP’s Okhla MLA Amanatullah Khan is no longer the chairman of the Delhi Waqf Board, with the city’s revenue department issuing an order that the position is deemed to have fallen vacant on February 11, the day the sixth Delhi Assembly got dissolved.
The order dated March 20 invokes Section 14(1) of the Waqf Act, 1995.
Khan has been leading the Delhi government’s relief and rehabilitation efforts in the Northeast Delhi district, where 53 people were killed in communal riots last month. Khan has also been defending suspended AAP councillor Tahir Hussain, who is in police custody for his alleged role in the murder of Intelligence Bureau staffer Ankit Sharma during the riots.
“The journey between September 2018 (when he became chairman) and March 2020 was good. I am happy I could help the poor and needy and extend their rights to them,” Khan, who was re-elected from the Okhla seat by over 70,000 votes, tweeted.
Section 14(1) of Waqf Act, 1995, states that in case a Muslim member of the board ceases to be an MLA, he should be deemed to have vacated his office.
“As the Delhi Assembly dissolved on February 11, 2020, and members of the newly constituted Assembly took oath on February 24, the statutory provisions of Section 14 of the Waqf Act got attracted with effect from 11.02.2020,” the order stated.
Importantly, the order issued by a deputy commissioner-ranked officer of the department added that Khan could not have taken any action in his official capacity, “including taking any decisions or signing any cheques”, on behalf of the board starting February 11.
Khan has issued several monetary compensation cheques over the last one month for riot victims. Even on March 17, two cheques of Rs 2 lakh each were issued to two Hindu families by Khan.
It was not immediately clear what happens to those cheques, even as Delhi government sources maintained that the matter was purely technical and Khan will be reinstated soon.
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