Friday, 22 February 2013 00:44
ISLAMABAD: Minister of Religious Affairs Khurshid Shah on Thursday announced salient features of Hajj Policy 2013 under which Hajj quota will remain 179,210 and shall be implemented through government scheme and private Hajj Group Organizers (HGOs) in the ratio of 50:50.
Addressing a press conference at PID along with Minister of Information and Broadcasting , he said applications for hajj-2013 under Government Hajj Scheme will be received on the principle of "First come, First serve."
He said the applications under Government scheme will be invited through designated banks after the approval of Hajj Policy-2013.
Khurshid Shah said any person who has performed Hajj during the last five years will not be eligible to perform Hajj in 2013 except Mehram, Group Leader or the one undertaking Haj-e-badal.
Under the government Hajj Scheme, three categories of accommodation i.e. Blue category within 900 meters without transport with a rental ceiling of Saudi Riyals (SR) 8000 per pilgrim, Green Category within 2000 meters with transport with a rental ceiling of (SR) 6000 per pilgrim and White Category beyond 2000 meters with transport with a rental ceiling of SR 3800 per pilgrim have been proposed, he said.
He said the rent in Makkah Mukarramah will be charged on actual basis while in case of Madinah Munawwarah, it will be charged at a flat rate of SR 500 per pilgrim.
Khurshid Shah said 05 percent of the total seats under government scheme will be reserved for hardship cases and for pilgrims recommended and funded by charitable institutions, Labour/low paid Employees of different public sector organizations/ corporate entities under the concept of corporate social responsibility, etc.
As per agreement with Moassassah South Asia, hujjaj of Government Scheme will use train facility in Mashair and Saudi Riyal 450 will be paid by the intending pilgrims under compulsory hajj dues for qurbani to be arranged through Islamic Development Bank.
Every haji will have to arrange and carry atleast SR 1000 for their food and daily expenses while proceeding on sacred journey, he said.
Hujjaj will be airlifted equally (50:50) by Pakistani and Saudi Arabian airlines as per Air Service Agreement (ASA) between Government of Pakistan and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and 30,000 to 40,000 hujjaj will be transported directly to Madina from Pakistan.
He said MoU for airfare Rs 87,500 for South region and Rs. 97,500 for north region has been sent to MD,PIAC for signatures. However, it is proposed that Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) may be directed to waive-off the additional charges of handling Hujjaj of Hajj-2013.
For the welfare services during Hajj, Hajj Medical Mission comprising 540 personnel, 230 Mouvineen e Hujjaj, 270 seasonal duty staff and 900 Local Mouvineen e Hujjaj in KSA will be deputed subject to availability of resources and as per requirement of Pakistan Hajj Mission/ MoRA.
A comprehensive awareness campaign for education and training of the intending pilgrims will be launched, he added.
He said Hajjaj Mohafiz Scheme based on the concept of "Takaful" will be continued in Hajj Policy-2013 and monitoring and supervision mechanism for Hajj operation in Pakistan and KSA shall be strengthened.
Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2013