MP HC | Right to become Mujahir and Mutawali on the basis of Will and Succession; Order of Wakf Tribunal to first decide owner of Dargah property upheld 

Madhya Pradesh High Court: The Bench of Vivek Rusia, J. upheld the order of dismissal for want of locus standi passed by Wakf Tribunal, Bhopal, in a civil revision application. 

The deceased applicant, Iqbal Ahmad in legal capacity of legal heir applied to the Wakf for declaration of his title as Mujahir and Mutawali of Dargah he further pleaded the Tribunal to declare the auction by Tehsildar, of the appended land of Dargah illegal, which is in favor of the defendant and to restrain him from interfering with his peaceful possession. Applicant’s deceased father, Mushtaq Ahmed registered the said land in the year 1974 with the Tribunal and requested for upholding his title as Mutawali. The Court has granted an injunction in favor of the applicant’s father, despite the stay order the Tehsildar has auctioned the land in favour of the defendant. After the death of his father, he applied the Wakf for declaration of his title after submitting the adequate fees. 

The defendant raised an objection based on the ‘Locus Standi’ of the applicant, the said applicant is claiming title based on the Will of the deceased, further, they contended that the suit of the deceased is pending hence, the applicant cannot claim his title on the basis of the uncertain title of the deceased. 

The Tribunal held, “The plaintiff had no locus to challenge the auction as, during pendency of the Civil Revision, his right has not been established over the land.” The Tribunal dismissed the claim of the application and rejected his plaint. Being aggrieved by the order of Tribunal the deceased filed the Revision Petition which was carried forward by his son Irfan Ahmed as right to sue survives. He contended that he is the successor Mujahir and Mutawali, he has helped his ancestors in the working of Dargah and performed his duties as Mutawali.  

The Court observed, right to become a Mujahir and Mutawali claimed by Mustaq Ahmed on the basis of Will is yet to be established by the Court. However, Iqbal Ahmed was brought on record in place of Mustaq Ahmed by virtue of the Will in his favour hence, his right to become a Mujahir and Mutawali is also liable to be established. Irfan Ahmed is also required to establish his right to become Mujahir and Mutawali in place of Mustaq Ahmed and Iqbal Ahmed. 

It is important to mention here that in the Civil Revision filed by the Mustaq Ahmed, name of the applicant has been brought on record as legal representative and the Supreme Court has issued a direction for deciding the said revision treating to be filed by the present applicant

The Court further held, “Unless the right of Mustaq Ahmed is established, Iqbal Ahmed and Irfan Ahmed cannot claim by way of succession or the Will, therefore, all these issues can be decided in a civil suit if Irfan Ahmed files an application for bringing his name in place of Iqbal Ahmed. If such an application is filed then same be allowed & the Tribunal is directed to decide the pending civil suit and if the application has not been filed so far, then the liberty is granted to Irfan Ahmed to file such an application. The Tribunal did not commit any error while holding that Iqbal Ahmed had no locus to file the suit during pendency of Civil Revision No.462/1999 now, after the remand Civil Suit No.141/1997. Hence, I do not find any illegality in the impugned order.”[Irfan Ahmed v. M.P. Wakf Board, Civil Revision No. 303 of 2015, Order dated 01-05-2019]

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