Minister of Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Mufti Abdul Shakoor said on Friday that the Federal Cabinet has approved Hajj Policy 2023, and Hajj applications can be submitted from March 16 to March 31, 2023.

Announcing Hajj Policy 2023 at a press conference, Mufti Abdul Shakoor said that applications can be submitted to 14 designated banks in the country.

As per the federal Minister, there is no room for free Hajj in the new policy, Pilgrims from the northern areas are liable to pay Rs1.175 million for Hajj while people from the southern part will be charged Rs1.165 million.

“The price of Hajj has risen due to rupee depreciation,” he said. “Pakistan’s quota for Hajj 2023 is 179,210 pilgrims.”

“The Hajj cost for Pakistan is below India, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan. On our request, the government of Saudi Arabia has reduced the cost of Hajj for Pakistan,” he maintained.

“Moreover, the Ministry of Finance has pledged an amount of $90 million to facilitate Hajj.”

He further said pilgrims can avail of rail service in Mina and Muzdalifah.

He added that the government was making efforts to provide all possible facilities to pilgrims.

Only necessary expenses are added to the Hajj price, he said.

Last week, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar committed to extending maximum support and cooperation for facilitating the pilgrims for Hajj 2023.

Chairing a meeting on Hajj Policy-2023, he stated that Hajj is a sacred religious obligation that has to be performed by every Muslim and “we have to play our part for the blessings of Almighty Allah.”

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