Dilapidated Platforms Can’t be Declared Religious Without Proof Says SC to Waqf Board
NEW DELHI (IANS) – The Supreme Court on April 29 observed that in the absence of any proof of dedication or user, a dilapidated wall or a platform cannot be conferred a status of a religious place for the purpose of offering namaaz.
The court noted that there is no evidence, at any given point of time, that the structure was being used as a mosque. It added that there is no allegation or proof of either of dedication or user or grant which can be termed as a waqf within the meaning of the Waqf Act.
It said this while dismissing appeals filed by the Rajasthan Waqf Board when it had been told not to interfere with the action of Jindal Saw Ltd and others in removal of a structure.
In 2010, the firm was granted lease of an area measuring 1,556.7817 hectares for the mining of gold, silver, lead, zinc, copper, iron, cobalt, nickel and associated minerals in Bhilwara.
In 2012, the Anjuman Committee addressed a letter to the Chairman of the Waqf Board stating there is a wall and chabutra (platform) on a ‘Tiranga Ki Qalandari Masjid’ where in olden times, laborer’s used to offer prayers. However, the elders in the community said they have not seen anybody praying namaaz, nor there is access to water and stairs to reach the platform. The Waqf Board, however had said the area should be saved from mining.