Selling a Waqf Property

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Q: A house was given as waqf to a jamaat. A mutawalli sold it below value and invested the money in his own investment? Was it correct to sell waqf property? The other jamaat members were not happy with what he did though he says he will pay the jamaat back. So far he has only paid a little of the money. Should that mutawalli be asked to resign?

A: The Ulema are unanimous that selling waqf property is not permissible. The sale itself is not valid. Steps should be taken to cancel that sale and redeem the Waqf property. As for the trustee, well he has committed a serious breach of trust, on the basis of which he has disqualified himself from being a trustee. It is written in the Hanafi book of Jurisprudence, Raddul-Muhtaar that when a trustee breaches his trust, he is automatically disqualified from acting any longer in that position. He should, therefore, resign. If the sale is cancelled then this trustee has to reimburse the buyer for the price of that house. If due to legal technicalities, this could not be done, then the trustee has to pay the market value of the property back into the trust.