Minister declares all applicants successful for Hajj 2011

ISLAMABAD: Minister of Religious Affairs Syed Khursheed Ahmed Shah Monday said that all 86,000 Hajj applicants have been declared as eligible for performing the Hajj 2011.Addressing a press conference, he said: “ All the applicants, who submitted applications in various banks by May 29 will be eligible to perform Hajj 2011 as the Government has withdrawn its 15 percent quota with the resolve to facilitate the intending pilgrims.” Elaborating the Minister said as per past practices, the government withholds 15 percent quota to facilitate the labours and the needy.He said the process of submitting applications were started on May, 15 and within ten days on May 26 about 76,000 people had submitted their applications in various banks while the total number of intending pilgrims reached to 86,000 on May 29.He said it was difficult for the ministry to refuse the pilgrims who wish to reach holy land for performing the religious obligations.Khursheed Shah said banks have been asked to submit passports to the ministry as it has been decided to dispatch 7,000 passports daily to Saudi embassy for stamping visa.

He said process to hire buildings for intending pilgrim would be completed till July 15. PIA will issue flight schedule on July,1 and the information would be dispatched to the successful pilgrims by August 15.He said intending pilgrims belonging to same districts will be accommodated in one flight and one building.While the PIA will allot them terminals in advance to save the time of the intending pilgrims, he said.The Minister said the ministry will also launch an awareness campaign to facilitate the intending pilgrims, MoU in this regard has already been inked with Radio Pakistan and PTV. – APP