HC division bench upholds single judge order on Wakf property

Update: 2023-12-06 15:41 GMT
The Telangana High Court. (DC Image)

Hyderabad: The Division Bench of the Telangana High Court comprising Chief Justice Alok Aradhe and Justice N.V. Shravan Kumar has upheld the single judge's order, which had faulted the state government in notifying a land as the wakf property in 2006 based on the enquiry report prepared 41 years ago by the Wakf Commissioner.

The Division Bench observed that the exercise of statutory powers after a period of 41 years without any explanation for the same cannot be said to be an exercise of statutory powers within a reasonable time and therefore, the same is vitiated in law.

The Bench was dealing with the batch of appeals filed by Telangana Wakf Board challenging the single judge orders which set aside the proceeding of Ranga Reddy's Joint Collector, who declined to issue Occupancy Rights Certificate over the land admeasuring 50 acres and 8 guntas in Survey No.113 to 120 of Karmanghat village to the private parties on the ground of that the lands were notified as Wakf property in 2006.

While private parties claimed that their ancestors were in possession of the said land since 1950 and the same was recognised under the provisions of the Andhra Pradesh (Telangana Area) Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act, 1950; and certificates were issued under the Act stating that they are protected tenants under Section 34 and 35.

They challenged the gazette notification issued by the government in 2006 in notifying the land as Wakf property based on the report dated August 7, 1965, by the Wakf Commissioner, under the provisions of Section 4(4) of the Wakf Act, 1954. However, the said law was repealed in 1995.

Based on the available facts, the single judge in 2017 had declared that the said land was not wakf property and also directed the RDO of Ranga Reddy to consider the matter of issuing Occupancy Certificates to the private parties.

Challenging the same, the Telangana State Wakf Board filed appeals, which were dismissed by the division bench.


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