The Haryana Waqf Board, a body corporate having perpetual succession, was established by the State Government under section 13 (1) of the Waqf Act, 1995 (Act No. 43 of 1995) on 1st August, 2003 vide Government of Haryana Notification No. 18/2/96-3JJ (I), dated 1.8.2003.Previously, the State of Haryana was one of the constituent units of the erstwhile Punjab Waqf Board.
The erstwhile Punjab Waqf Board was dissolved vide notification of Govt. of India, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, dated 29th July, 2003 w.e.f. the 1st day of August, 2003. After the dissolution of the erstwhile Punjab Waqf Board (which was a composite Board for Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and U.T. Chandigarh), the States of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and U.T. Chandigarh established separate Waqf Boards for their territories.The board is managing 12505 waqf properties falling in the jurisdiction of the Haryana state under its control.
The erstwhile Punjab Waqf Board was established on 2nd September, 1961 under section 9 of the Waqf Act, 1954 with jurisdiction over the entire erstwhile State of Punjab as it existed prior to its re-organization in the year 1966. The Punjab Waqf Board continued to retain its name and jurisdiction even after the re-organization of the erstwhile State of Punjab into three States i.e. Haryana, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh and UT of Chandigarh. The Punjab Waqf Board served as a common link in respect of waqf administration in these States and the Union Territory of Chandigarh.
Being an inter-state Waqf Board, it continued to function under the administrative control of the Government of India.
The erstwhile Punjab Waqf Board had under its control nearly 40,000 waqfs. However, the revenue derived from these waqfs was quite low because of several factors. As there was mass exodus of Muslim population from this part of Punjab in the wake of partition of the country, the waqf properties came under the control of the Custodian of Evacuee Properties. As there were no means to verify at that stage of utter confusion as to which of the properties left over by the migrating Muslims were their personal properties and which of such properties were waqfs, the Custodian of Evacuee Properties started allotting such properties to those who migrated from Pakistan at very nominal rents, mostly based on possession.
This situation continued for a long time, with the result that alongwith personal properties of Muslims, the waqf properties also went under the possession of the incoming migrants at very nominal rents. It was only after enactment of the Waqf Act, 1954 and establishment of the Punjab Waqf Board in 1960 that a vigorous and sustained exercise was initiated to identify Muslim waqf properties as distinct from Muslim evacuee properties so as to enable the Government to transfer such properties to the Board of Waqfs constituted under the Act for the erstwhile State of Punjab. This exercise took considerable time (from 1963 to 1969) and after a great deal of deliberations and extensive survey of waqf properties by a Waqf Commissioner appointed by the Government such of these properties which could be identified as waqfs were transferred to the Punjab Waqf Board, mostly with sitting tenants.
It was under such a situation that the Punjab Waqf Board could assume supervision and control over such of these Muslim waqf properties as could be identified and transferred to the Board. As the rents fixed by the Custodian of Evacuee Properties in respect of such properties were extremely low, the revenue derived from these properties known as “Auqaf”, which came under the purview of the Board, was insignificant and was not at all commensurate with the value of the properties so transferred. However, situation has considerably improved in this regard since the creation of the Haryana Waqf Board.
Objectives of Haryana Waqf Board
- To manage all waqfs in the State and safeguard them from encroachment.
- To exercise its powers under the Waqf Act, 1995 to ensure that the waqfs under its supervision and management are properly maintained, controlled and administered and the income thereof is duly applied to the objects and for the purposes for which such waqfs were created or intended.
- To investigate and determine the nature and extent of a waqf, and to cause, wherever necessary, a survey of waqf properties.
- To generate and maintain the records of all waqf properties.
- To maintain the records containing information relating to the origin, income, object and beneficiaries of every waqf by computerization of waqf records.
- To lease and rent out properties attached with the waqfs to earn maximum revenue.
- To formulate welfare and educational schemes from the surplus income from waqfs for the upliftment and empowerment of the Muslim community, especially promotion of knowledge and learning and making them self-dependent.
- To perform all such acts as may be necessary for the control, maintenance and administration of waqfs.