GOI waiting for SC orders on Private Hajj operators

KL Report

SRINAGAR

As the first batch of Hajj pilgrims is scheduled to leave on August 27, the issues related to the private tour operators in Jammu and Kashmir are yet to be resolved. Meanwhile, J&K Awami Ittihad Front President today took up the issues of Hajj Pilgrimage quota related to private tour operators for Jammu and Kashmir with the Union Home Minister during a meeting in New Delhi.

“The government of India has not yet granted the Hajj quota 2014 to the tour & travel agencies, due to which the people attached to the tour & travel agencies are facing lot of problems because the Hajj session 2014 is about to begin in the last week of this Month” AIF  Rabia Baji in a statement issued to GNS said.

Baji took up the issue with the Home Minister Rajnath Singh and discussed all the related issues regarding the issue and the problems faced by the people, the statement said. “The Home Minister said that this process has stopped due to the Supreme Court orders and the government is waiting for the court orders”.

The Home Minister said that we are working on the issue and will complete all the necessary process before the commencement of the Hajj pilgrimage, the statement said.

Rabia Baji urged the Home Minister that the issue should be solved as soon as possible as “Hajj is an important and compulsory organ of Islam and lot of people are suffering due to the issue”, the statement said.

The statement further said the Home Minster assured Baji, that he will personally examine the issue so that it could get solved at an earliest. “Baji also took up the issue of foreign medical trained doctors who are not allowed to practice in India because they have not been allotted the practice license by the Medical Council of India and Baji urged the Home Minster that this issue should be solved so that the foreign doctors could practice in India”, the statement added.

Pertinently, the Indian government had Wednesday warned that unless private tour operators stop “trying to maximize” their personal interest at the cost of pilgrims, all those going with the help of them “may suffer”.

While arrangements of 120,000 people going through the Hajj Committee, where the Indian government makes all arrangements, have been made, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had said there are issues with 36,000 pilgrims who would be going through private tour operators.

The quota of Indian nationals who will go to the Hajj this year is 156,000 and the first batch of Hajj pilgrims is scheduled to leave on August 27.

“The matter is now with the Supreme Court but unless the private tour operators review their position, it is going to be extremely difficult for them to meet the requirements of the Saudi government and they may well lose the opportunity to send Indian pilgrims to Saudi Arabia through their aegis,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had said.

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