Srinagar: Chairperson J&K Hajj Committee Safina Baig has sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi intervention over the high cost for Hajj pilgrimage for the union territory this year.
Baig had announced in February that the Hajj pilgrimage would be cheaper by almost Rs 80,000 and that each pilgrim would pay Rs 350,000 to 3,70,000 maximum for performing the pilgrimage.
However, the Hajj Committee of India has now fixed a tentative amount of Rs 3.95 lakh to be paid by each pilgrim to perform Hajj this year. Several pilgrims have expressed their disappointment at the high cost of the pilgrimage for J&K.
“Despite the announcement of cheaper Haj rates this year, the exorbitant fares from Kashmir are causing apprehensions among the people. As the leader of our nation, we have full faith in your ability to resolve this issue and make it easier for the people of Kashmir to fulfill their religious obligations,” Baig said in a series of tweets while tagging Prime Minister.
“We request your intervention regarding the high air fares for Kashmiri pilgrims in comparison to the rest of the Indian states & take necessary steps to ensure that the airfares for Kashmiri pilgrims are brought at par with those of other states,” she added.
The Chairperson J&K Hajj Committee said high costs are making it difficult for many devotees to undertake the holy pilgrimage.
“Your intervention will go a long way in providing relief to the people & strengthening the unity of our diverse nation. Pertinently, the airfare difference between Bangaluru & Srinagar is Rs 91K, Delhi & Srinagar is Rs 50K, Hyderabad & Srinagar is Rs 90K, Mumbai & Srinagar is Rs 90K. This clearly give rise in apprehensions among masses in Kashmir that needs to be tackled immediately,” she added.
This year around 10, 000 people from Jammu and Kashmir are expected to perform the Haj pilgrimage next month.