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Increase of 20 thousand in India’s quota for Haj 2016

Aurangabad: Maharashtra State Haj Committee’s Chairman, Ibarhimbhai while addressing a press conference here on 19 July said that in this year (2016)’s Haj Quota an increase of 20,000 has been made because of which Maharashtra gets an additional increase of 1400 seats. He also participated in a 2-day Haj training session held for prospective Haj pilgrims starting from Marathwada and while reiterating the same thing said that because of restrictions placed on Iran, this increase of 20 thousand in the Indian quota has been made possible because of which Haj pilgrims from Maharashtra will also benefit. He further said that at present the Central Haj Committee has Rs. 500 crores in its account and with this amount many other expenses of Haj are met but now the government is thinking of spending this amount for other purposes, though the Haj Committee is not in favour of this plan of the government. Moreover, he said that efforts are being made to return / reimburse the amounts of those prospective Haj pilgrims who had already deposited the Haj expenses, but were unable to go (to Saudi Arabia) for Haj because of their illness or death at the last minute, a positive solution to this problem will be found. About the number of Haj pilgrims from Maharashtra he said that a total of about 55 thousand applications were received by Maharashtra State Haj Committee, though the Haj quota of Maharashtra state is 7356 only.

He also spoke about tightening control on private Haj Tour Operators and said that in case government’s Haj subsidy is abolished after 5 years, a request has been made to the government that in that case government should provide a fund of rs. 25 thosuand crores (to the Central Haj Committee).

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-31 August 2016 on page no. 14

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