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Rediff.com  » News » Lanco hills land Waqf property rules AP high court

Lanco hills land Waqf property rules AP high court

April 03, 2012 20:01 IST

The YSR government had allotted Waqf land worth Rs 32,000 crore to Lanco group and other companies ignoring the protest by the Waqf Board and other Muslim organisations. Mohammed Siddique reports

The Rs 7,200 crore housing project of Congress Member of Parliament and industrialist L Rajagopal has received a blow with the Andhra Pradesh high court rejecting its petition that the land allotted to its project did not belong to the state Waqf Board.

In a landmark judgement, with a far reaching impact on several other land disputes in Hyderabad, the high court has ruled that 1654.32 acres of land in Manikonda village belonged to the Dargah Hazrat Hussain Shah Wali and it comes under the AP state Waqf Board.

The high court, which after prolonged hearing had reserved its judgement in the case a couple of months back, has referred the case to the state Waqf Tribunal for further hearing. The tribunal has already ordered all the construction activity at the site to stop.

Out of this, the then YSR government had allotted 108.10 acres of land to Lanco Group for a housing project in the prime area of the city and the remaining land was allotted to several other IT companies and MNCs.

With this the prospects have become bleak for the Lanco Hills project which was already been facing a problem of cost over run by more than Rs 1,200 crore. The land dispute and the legal battle has also scared away many potential buyers.

YSR government had allotted the precious Waqf land worth Rs 32,000 crore to Lanco and other companies ignoring the protest by the Waqf Board and other Muslim organisations, who later challenged the decision in the court.

Making it a prestige issue, Lanco had hired the services of top legal brains including Soli Sorabjee to prove that the land was not Waqf property but it belonged to the government. However, the Waqf Board represented by senior counsel Shafeeq-ur-Rahman Mohajir established that the land was a gift to the Dargah Hussain Shah Wali by Nawab Muqtarul Mulk.

Mohammed Siddique in Hyderabad