JK awaits additional Hajj quota
Aspirants seek release of 2nd list
Srinagar, Sept 1: Even as the All India Hajj Committee this year has received a handsome additional Hajj quota given huge surrenders in Pakistan in wake of massive floods in that country, J&K has not received its due, sources told Greater Kashmir on Wednesday.
As per the official figures while last year J&K was allotted 7,644 seats including the additional quota by the All India Hajj Committee, this year it has got only 5661 seats against 22,785 applications with no additional quota so far.
“This is quite surprising and perhaps happened for the first time that instead of increasing the seats to J&K, which is the only Muslim majority state in India, they have been decreased this year,” sources said.
Many Hajj aspirants said that they were anxiously waiting for the release of second list which according to them should have been done by now.
“With the second list getting delayed, we have been pushed into quandary as we could not decide whether to approach the private companies to perform the holy pilgrimage,” they said.
“Unless we know whether we have been selected or not, how can we decide the second option which is to proceed on the pilgrimage through a private company,” said Rafiq Ahmad Peer, a Hajj aspirant, adding that the second option for many prospective Hajjis is depends on the release of the second list.
They said unlike in the previous years when government would vigorously pursue the issue on account of additional quota for J&K with the All India Hajj Committee, “this time the authorities are silent.”
“There is not even a murmur from the government on the allotment of the little quota to J&K. It seems the government being mired in other problems is hardly interested in this issue,” they said.
They said even the individual ministers, who otherwise would use their good offices to urge the All India Hajj Committee to issue additional quota to J&K, “have not done anything this time.”
Hajj aspirants said as per the set programme the pilgrimage shall start from October 10, which is little over a month away. “We have to make a lot of preparations so government should issue the second list at the earliest,” they suggested.
Executive Officer, J&K Hajj Committee, Dr Abdul Salam Mir confirmed that last year the state had received a total quota of 7644 seats which is much higher than what it has received this year so far, including the additional quota of 744 seats, which he revealed, has been received by the Committee only a few days ago.
Dr Mir assured the additional quota of 744, which takes the total seats allotted to J&K to 6405— still less by 1239 from the previous year’s 7644 — will be issued for publication within one or two days.
Hajj is an annual pilgrimage to Makkah in Saudi Arabia. It is the largest congregation in the world. Being a religious duty it is supposed to be carried by every able-bodied Muslim at least once in lifetime provided he/she can financially afford it.
Lastupdate on : Wed, 1 Sep 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 1 Sep 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 2 Sep 2010 00:00:00 IST
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