Kerala HC Allows Waqf Board To Continue Framing Of Scheme For School Management Till Decision Pendin on It Being Waqf Property

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Court was dealing with a civil revision petition filed against the order passed by Waqf Tribunal.

The Kerala High Court on Tuesday allowed the waqf board to continue framing a scheme for the management of a school, while the issue of whether or not the institution is a waqf property is being considered by the Waqf Tribunal.

The division judge bench of Justices A. Muhamed Mustaque and Sophy Thomas ordered that while the process of developing a scheme for the administration of Vaduthala Jama-ath Higher Secondary School could continue, it would not be implemented until the Waqf Tribunal issued its decision.

The present petitioner had filed a revision petition against the order dated March 17, 2023, passed by Waqf Tribunal. The Waqf board had issued an order to develop a plan for the school's administration. When the petitioners sought a stay of execution of the Waqf Board's order, the Waqf Tribunal at Kozhikode denied granting the same. The tribunal also noted that there was no interference in the matter of management and administration of the school and that the Board had only directed the Jama-ath to formulate a scheme to run the school.

The main issue that the present court was dealing with was whether Vaduthala Kottoor Kattupuram Palli Jama-ath could claim it’s a Waqf or not.

Vaduthala Jama-ath Educational Trust argued that the Trust exclusively ran the school and had nothing to do with the Waqf.

Counsel representing the petitioners submitted that the school was being run by the Trust for the last more than 50 years and if the stay is not granted, that will amount to interfering in the administration and management of the school.

“The school is an aided school. There is no adverse order against the administration or management of the school by the Trust,” the court said.

Further, the court also said that the order of the board to frame the scheme noted that the school was situated on the Waqf property. The question of whether it is a Waqf property or not has to be decided by the Tribunal, court held.

The framing of the scheme can go on, However, in the event scheme is framed, that shall not be implemented till a final decision is taken by the Tribunal, further ordered the court.

Accordingly, the court directed the Tribunal to dispose of the earlier order passed by the waqf board within six months.

Thus, the court disposed of the revision petition.

Case Title: Vaduthala Juma-Ath Educational Trust & Ors. v. Kerala State Waqf Board & Anr.