ED Raids Seven Places In Pune Over Waqf Land Case, Detains Two Persons

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Mubarak Ansari
Mumbai/Pune, 11th November 2021: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has launched an inquiry into an alleged scam involving the Waqf Board which comes under the ministry of Maharashtra Minister Nawab Malik. The ED has registered an ECIR in this case.

Today the central agency conducted searches at seven places belonging to accused persons in an FIR registered by the Pune City Police in the Waqf land case in August this year. Police had arrested five persons in the case.

On August 13, based on the complaint from Maharashtra Waqf Board’s Pune regional officer Khusro Khan, Bundgarden police station had registered the FIR against Imtiaz Shaikh and Chand Mulani, both residents of Yerwada, Pune.

According to the FIR, Tabut Inam Endowment Trust, which is registered with the Waqf board, owns 8 hectares 57.1 R land at Gat no. 335/1 in Maan village in Mulshi taluka of Pune district. The state government acquired 5 hectares 51 R land out of the total land for the Rajiv Gandhi IT Park in Hinjawadi. The government was supposed to give around Rs 9.64 Crore to the trust in return and accordingly government had released an amount of Rs 7.73 Crore.

However, the Waqf Board received a complaint from the trust that they did not receive any money from the government. During enquiry by the Deputy Collector (land acquisition), it was revealed that accused Imtiaz Shaikh and Chand Mulani had introduced themselves as the trust’s president and secretary. They had also submitted a forged document of the Waqf Board giving its consent to their appointment after which the collector office released the amount to them instead of the real trust members.

The incident took place between December 2020 and January 2021 at the office of the Pune District Collector. The case was registered for offences under sections 420,406,464,467,471 and 34 of IPC.

During investigation, police had arrested Imtiaz Shaikh, Chand Mulani, Santosh Bhagwan Kamble, Satish Nivrutti Rajguru alias Mahesh Patil and Advocate Kaleem Sayed. Three of them have been released on bail while two are still in custody.

One accused Zarib Khan has been absconding in the case. Zarib Khan was earlier booked by CBI in a defence land deal case of Pune in 2011.

Now ED has detained Kamble and Rajguru today after conducting searches.

Reacting to the ED action, Minister Nawab Malik said, “If ED is taking action against fraudulent activities and organizations, we will welcome it. But don’t try to defame the Waqf Board or me personally.”

During his press conference at Mantralaya in Mumbai, Malik added, “About 30,000 organizations are registered in the state under the Waqf Board and measures are being taken by the Waqf Board to make their administration transparent. Strict action is being taken against the misbehaving organizations.

Most of the members of the Maharashtra State Waqf Board have also been appointed and the post of Chief Executive Officer has been filled full time. The process of selection of the Chairman is also underway. The election of the Chairman of the Board will be held on 26th November. For the first time in the history of the Waqf Board, action has been taken to ensure that the Waqf Board can function at full capacity. The entire work of Waqf Board is also being done online and old documents are being digitized.”

Since the arrest of Aryan Khan in the drug case, Minister Nawab Malik and NCB official Sameer Wankhede as well as BJP leaders are putting allegations on each other. Meanwhile, Malik had also accused former state chief minister Devendra Fadnavis of patronizing drug peddlers in the state. Fadnavis and Malik had also accused each other of having links with the underworld.