Srinagar, Feb 11: J&K Hajj Committee chairperson SafeenaBaig Saturday said that this year 10,000 pilgrims from Jammu and Kashmir would perform Hajj.
Addressing a news conference here, Baig said, “Each pilgrim who would otherwise pay Rs 4.50 lakh will have to pay between Rs 3.50 lakh to Rs 3.70 lakh this year.”
She said that this year over 10,000 pilgrims from J&K would perform the holy journey of Hajj.
“Hajj office in Srinagar will facilitate every pilgrim including those who are having issues related to passports,” Baig said. “The Hajj applications are already up on the official website of the Hajj Committee of India (www.hajcommittee.gov.in) free of cost. “Earlier, every pilgrim had to pay Rs 300 for the form. Now, the form can be downloaded and filled with ease,” she said.
The J&K Hajj Committee chairperson said that in case of the need of conducting the RT-PCR test, the government would bear the expenses and take samples of the pilgrims free of cost.
She said that the pilgrims above 70-years of age would be prioritised for the Hajj while women aged 45 years, without Mehram, can perform the pilgrimage in groups.
“A group of four women without Mahram can perform the Hajj 2023,” Baig said adding that the Saudi Government had given relaxation to women who are not having any Mahram but yearn to perform Hajj.
She also said that from Azizia to Haram, pilgrims are likely to get direct bus services. “This has been the demand of pilgrims who performed the Haj in 2022,” Baig said. On whether there was any plan to address the issues of pilgrims in Makkah and Madina as last year many pilgrims complained of ill treatment by the hotels there, Baig said: “This year, Hajj officers will create different groups on Whatsapp and stay in touch with the pilgrims. In case of any issue or grievances, immediate redressal would be done.”
There will be 25 embankment points across the country for the pilgrims this year.