Bangladesh Waqf Administration

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BANGLADESH WAQF ADMINISTRATION
 
 
A waqf (Arabic: وقف, plural Arabic: اوقاف, awqāf; Turkish: vakıf) is an inalienable religious endowment in Islam, typically devoting a building or plot of land for Muslim religious or charitable purposes. It is conceptually similar to the common law trust.
 
A waqf were among the most important owners of property (movable as well as immovable) in the Islamic world until recent times, and remain significant. Their incomes support the upkeep of many mosques; in past times, charitable services such as hospitals and orphanages were often maintained by a waqf.
 
The practice of declaring property as waqf gained considerable currency due to the practice in many Muslim states of expropriating the properties of important persons, especially officials, when they died or were disgraced. By declaring his estate as waqf and his descendants as trustees, a rich man could provide an income for his surviving family.
 
The Muslim administrative body responsible for the Haram al-Sharif in Jerusalem is often referred to as "the waqf".
 
Most waqfs are created with an endowment of real estate property. But endowments of cash, hence cash waqfs, have also been permitted. Such waqfs were popular particularly in the Ottoman Empire. Ottoman jurists were not in agreement about the legality of these cash waqfs. While the SeyhulIslam Ebussuud Efendi supported them and gave a fatwa to that effect, some others did not. The result was the cash waqf controversy. The main objection pertained to the way the waqf funds were invested. But cash waqfs were supported by the Ottoman sultans, who considered them essential for the Islamization of South Eastern Europe.
 
The waqf revenue was not taxed; large portions of land in Egypt and the Ottoman empire were devoted to waqf and thus lay outside of the state’s control. The Ulama were the waqf trustees and assigned waqf revenues to their designated purposes. The net result was to introduce the concept of private ownership of land and to concentrate enormous holdings into the hands of a few families