The Delhi High Court has ordered the Delhi Waqf Board and the city government to clear outstanding salaries of board employees who have not been paid for over six months.
The court directed the authorities to release all outstanding dues of the employees within two weeks. If not, the court warned it would be forced to pass “adverse orders” on the next date of hearing on April 18.
The court order came after the Delhi Waqf Board Employees Association and an individual employee moved the court, claiming they had not received their salaries since October 2022, causing “unfathomable financial hardships.”
Advocate M Sufian Siddiqui, representing the petitioners, argued that the employees have been deprived of their right to a dignified life, and their constitutional and fundamental rights have been violated.
The petition stated that it was essential for the board to take necessary measures to release the employees’ salaries, and paucity of funds cannot be an excuse. The plea also highlighted that the “entire functioning of the board has collapsed,” and its staff has been in a grim situation due to unresolved issues.
Furthermore, the petition noted that the board has not been able to transact its business since January 5, 2022, after which no meetings have been held. This has led to a severe blow to the revenue generation of the Delhi Waqf Board. The budget of the board has also not been prepared and forwarded to the state government on time, causing delays in sending requisitions for the grant-in-aid to the Delhi government.
The plea argued that the employees’ salaries were necessary for them to maintain their livelihood, and the denial of the same amounts to the violation of the Right to Life Guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution. (With inputs from PTI)