Law to protect Waqf properties in offing: Heptullah
Union Minority Affairs Minister Najma Heptullah on Sunday said her ministry has drafted a Bill to protect the Waqf Board properties and it would soon be put before the Union Cabinet. “The Bill has been readied,” she said.
Asked about large-scale encroachment on Waqf properties in Bhopal, she said: “If the community members start protests under a public movement, I am ready to join them to free the Waqf properties from encroachments.”
She said these lands can be freed through a ‘Gandhian’ movement. The Waqf Board has huge properties across India, spread over six lakh acres in all, he said. Citing the Sacchar Committee report on welfare of minorities, she said if the Waqf properties were put to use, they can fetch Rs 12,000 crore annually. The government has increased budgetary allocation for minority welfare, she said, adding scholarships for students from the minority communities had been increased by 25 per cent.