Shias Protest Against Waqf Board Over Illegal Land Deals

Yasir Ali Mirza for BeyondHeadlines

Disappointed over alleged corruption of Bihar State Shia Waqf Board in illegal land deals, a protest was held in Patna on Tuesday. Led by the day prayer leader of Shia Jama Masjid of Muzaffarpur, Maulana Syed Mohammad Kazim Shabib and other Shia clerics of Bihar, the protesters demanded immediate dismantling of the corrupt Waqf Board and setting up a governmental enquiry in the massive embezzlement of public funds and gross irregularities of Waqf properties in the state. They also demanded the immediate eviction of land properties illegally occupied by the influential persons.

The protest witnessed a massive gathering from every nook and corner of Bihar at Patna’s central place Kargil Chowk near sprawling Gandhi Maidan. People raised black banners and placards and chanted slogans “Down with Shia Waqf Board,” “Labbaik Ya Hussain,” “Give us Back our Waqf Properties,” to save the invaluable Shia waqf lands in Bihar. Number of people from Sunni community also came to support the cause. They also raised slogans in solidarity with Maulana Kazim’s ongoing struggle against the corrupt Motawalli and his backers who have planned to sell off Waqf lands in Muzaffarpur.

Before concluding into Hartali Chowk near Chief Minister’s residence, the protest march passed through busy routes of Fraser Road, Bailey Road, Dak Bungalow Chowk amidst tight security cordon.

Maulana Kazim said, “We are here to lodge our anger and frustration about the state of affairs of Waqf properties. The Bihar State Shia Waqf Board has been made a hub of immense corruption in all these years. The properties which have been endowed for the welfare of community have been deliberately plundered by the nexus of Waqf board officials, government officials, motawallis of respective waqfs and land mafias.”

A five member delegation led by Maulana Kazim also met with the Chief Minister Jeetan Ram Manjhi’s representatives and submitted a memorandum of demands. As the CM was busy in a meeting with prior schedule the bureaucrats who met with the delegation gave assurance that Chief Minister will call them in next few days to discuss the matter at full length. There had been tremendous pressure on Maulana Kazim and other Shia clerics from every quarter to postpone this peaceful protest.


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