Saturday, May 25th, 2024

First batch of Haj pilgrims from Srinagar leaves for Saudi Arabia

The first batch of pilgrims from Srinagar left for Medina, Saudi Arabia on Thursday to perform Haj.

Speaking to ANI, a Haj pilgrim said, “We are grateful to the (central) government for providing us all the necessary assistance. We are happy that Allah has chosen us to perform Haj at such a young age. I will pray for lasting peace and prosperity in Kashmir.

The first batch of pilgrims departed for the annual Haj pilgrimage from Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport early Thursday.

“Today, the first flight for Haj 2024 departed for Madinah at 2.20 am (May 9) with 285 people. I would like to congratulate all the pilgrims and wish them a safe journey. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, support and facilities for pilgrims are improving. We have introduced ‘Har Suvidha’ mobile application this year for the convenience of the pilgrims as well as for their safety during the journey. In case of any emergency or unexpected situation, the app will directly connect the pilgrim to the control room and help centre. Delhi State Haj Committee Chairperson Kausar Jahan told ANI, 16,500 pilgrims have registered to depart from Delhi for Haj this year.

Meanwhile, officials in Rajasthan’s Pali district said around 80 pilgrims were to be vaccinated before leaving for Saudi Arabia.

State Haj Committee Chairman Mohammad Ayub Khan said, “Proper arrangements have been made for vaccination for Haj pilgrims this year. Pilgrims are being vaccinated against polio, influenza and Mangalore meningitis before leaving for Haj. We all saw how vaccines proved to be life-saving during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Thus this explains the importance of the vaccination camp.”

Pali Chief Health Officer Dr. Shriram Yadav said, “A total of 80 pilgrims are to be vaccinated before the pilgrimage. “70 of them have already received the vaccine.”

Consular, Passport, Visa and Overseas Indian Affairs Secretary Muktesh K Pardeshi reviewed the preparations for Haj 2024 in Jeddah and Madinah on Tuesday.

Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam, the others being Shahada (faith), Salah (prayer), Zakat (charity) and Roza (fasting).

Every year, millions of Muslims around the world undertake the holy pilgrimage to Mecca. Spiritual journeying is considered extremely important by believers of the Islamic faith as it provides them with the opportunity to connect with Allah, seek forgiveness, and strengthen their faith.

The desire to join the crowd of pilgrims to Mina, to repeat the labaiq with the crowd and perform the rituals of Hajj is a sentiment shared by countless Muslims around the world.

Hajj attracts people from different walks of life towards a common objective – setting aside their differences and embracing each other as equals before Allah.

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