Meaning :The meaning of the word waqf is ‘detention, stoppage, tying up or dedication ’. In the legal context, waqf means detention or tying up of a property, in the ownership of god the almighty, so that its produce or income may always be available for religious or charitable purposes. When a waqf is created, the property is detained or, is ‘tied up’ forever and thereafter becomes non-transferable. As a result of the creation of Waqf, the right of the waqif, who is the settler here, on the property is extinguished and the ownership is transferred to the almighty.
It is a dedication in perpetuity by a person professing Islam, for a pious purpose or succession of pious purposes. In India, Waqf is a pious endowment, which is inalienable.
In Islamic law it means:
- pious endowments
- State lands, which are inalienable, used for charitable purposes
The person who creates the Waqf is called ‘Waqif or Settler’ and the person in whose favour, the property is transferred is called ‘Mutavali’. A ‘Mutavali is the manager or the administrator appointed for managing the Waqf. When once a waqf is validly created, all rights over the property will pass on to the god.
As per section 2 of Mussalman Waqf Validating Act” The permanent dedication by a person possessing the musalman faith of any property for any purpose recognized by muslaman law as religious, pious or charitable.
As per Section 3(r) of Waqf Act 1995 ” “waqf” means the permanent dedication by any person, of any movable or immovable
property for any purpose recognised by the Muslim law as pious, religious or charitable and
(i) a waqf by user but such waqf shall not cease to be a waqf by reason only of the user
having ceased irrespective of the period of such cesser;
(ii) a Shamlat Patti, Shamlat Deh, Jumla Malkkan or by any other name entered in a revenue
(iii) “grants”, including mashrat-ul-khidmat for any purpose recognised by the Muslim Law as pious, religious or charitable; and
(iv) a ‘ Waqf -alal-aulad and waqif means any person making such dedication.