THE PUNJAB Muslim Welfare Council has moved High Court challenging the nomination of Abdul Wahid, a member of the Punjab Waqf, and sought quashing of the order of the department of home affairs and justice, Punjab, which dismissed the representation of the petitioner.
The division bench of Chief Justice Ravi Shanker and Justice Arun Palli, have issued notice to the Punjab Government for reply on November 26, 2020.
The petitioner, Punjab Muslim Welfare Council, has sought directions to Punjab government and additional secretary, department of home affairs and justice, Punjab, to nominate an eligible person as member of the Punjab Waqf Board under the provisions of section 14(1)(d) in place of respondent no.4 whose nomination is illegal and arbitrary and is in violation of the provision of section 16 and section 14(1)(d) of Wakf Act, 1995.
The petitioners have also sought to cancel the lease qua the Waqf property number 1246 consisting of a residential house and a nursery situated at Rajbaha Road, Patiala, made in favour of respondents who are the sons and nephew of Abdul Wahid. It has been argued that Abdul Wahid is not a recognised scholar in Shia and Sunni Islamic Theology, and thus is not eligible to be nominated as member of Waqf Board under section 14 (1)(d).
Advocate SS Grewal, counsel for the petitioners, submitted that in November 2019, a PIL (Public Interest Litigation) was filed at the Punjab and Haryana High Court, challenging the nomination of Abdul Wahid in 2017 in Waqf Board, mentioning that he is not a scholar in Shia and Sunni Islamic theology, that he is an “encroacher of Waqf land” and cannot possess any Waqf land even on lease which was disposed of by the court with direction to the competent authority to decide the representation filed by the petitioners within 8 weeks.
However, the department of home affairs and justice, Punjab dismissed the representation as being “devoid of merits” in its order on February 14, 2020, in an illegal, arbitrary and unjustified manner, against which the petitioner council has approached the court again.
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