Taking the battle to the other camp, chairman of Shia Central Board of Waqfs, Syed Waseem Rizvi Wednesday said an FIR will be lodged within next five days against Maulana Kalbe Jawwad for “selling waqf properties and misappropriation of funds”. A decision to this effect was taken in the first meeting of newly constituted board held earlier in the day.
Rizvi termed Jawwad as “a blackmailer who is a threat to law and order” but government is afraid of taking action against him due to his religious status.
Jawwad is leading an agitation by a group of Shia community members demanding removal of Rizvi from the chairmanship alleging corruption in waqf board. The protest has lead to community members keeping the Bada Imambara and Chhota Imambara locked for past two weeks.
“After conducting an inquiry into the properties where Jawwad is Mutawalli (caretaker), it has been established that he sold waqf properties, withdrew money from waqf account, purchased one house in his name and sold land for graves. He had replied to our notices but we are not convinced and FIR will be lodged against him in next five days,” Rizvi told newsmen.
He also displayed sale deeds related to waqf properties situated at Misri Ki Bagiya, Waqf Taqaiyya Begum and Waqf Imambara Ghuframaab in old city.
Rizvi alleged that Jawwad’s brother-in-law Kamaluddin Akbar was chairman of waqf board in 2010 and had sold properties in Bareilly, Saharanpur and Allahabad. The Bareilly property was bought by then waqf minister Shahzil Islam who later sold it, while Saharanpur property was bought by a business group. “It is the same Rs 450-crore property for which Jawwad is worried but perhaps he forgot that his brother-in-law was chairman at that time. I re-opened the case and issued notices,” Rizvi claimed.
On locking of Bada and Chhota Imambaras, Rizvi claimed that the Shia community is being misguided in the name of religion. “We will write to Lucknow district magistrate (DM) for getting the monuments unlocked and initiating legal proceedings against Jawwad,” he added.
Mincing no words, Rizvi claimed that the state government does not want to take stern measure due to religious sentiments and Jawwad is blackmailing it by adopting pressure tactics.
Rizvi refused to resign from the waqf board, as demanded by Jawwad. “I am convinced that even Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav will not ask me to resign under pressure from Jawwad,” he said. Rizvi also displayed a report from CB-CID mentioning that he has been given clean chit in six cases, which were lodged against him.
The board during its meeting also decided to write a letter to Rampur DM for submitting a detailed report about waqf properties in the district within 20 days as “maximum waqf properties have been misused in the district”.
Rampur is the native district of Minority Welfare and Waqf Minister Azam Khan while most of the waqf properties were in control of his bete noire, local Congress MLA, Nawab Kazim Ali Khan alias Naved Miyan.
The board decided to form district level committees for keeping tab and safeguarding waqf properties. It was also decided to recruit 21 more staff. The board has demanded from the state government to recruit a full time Chief Executive Officer in the board.
Meanwhile, the agitation led by Jawwad continued on Wednesday. Women who are protesting at Chhota Imambara tried to take out a march to CM’s residence, but were stopped and sent back by the police.