The Ministry of Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony on Tuesday ruled out the possibility of last date extension in Hajj applications.
pilgrims must pay their Hajj fees and file their applications on time.
He stated that the ministry had so far received 44,621 Hajj applications through specified banks, breaking down the number of applications. According to him, 4,308 applications for the Sponsorship Hajj Scheme and 40,313 applications for the Government Hajj Scheme respectively.
In order to assist the intending pilgrims on the weekend, he said the designated banks stayed open across the country for the collection of Hajj applications and dues.
He added that on Saturday, the ministry received 4,468 Hajj applications, of which 3,960 were submitted through the Government Hajj Scheme and 508 through the Sponsorship Hajj Scheme. On Sunday, the ministry received 2,679 Hajj applications, of which 2,371 were submitted through the Government Hajj Scheme and 308 through the Sponsorship Hajj Scheme.
Butt stated that Meezan Bank had amassed the most Hajj applications (9,142), including 940 under the Sponsorship Hajj Scheme.
He said that overseas Pakistanis could either provide a medical fitness certificate prior to their Hajj flight or they could send a health certificate issued from abroad to the bank.
He said applicants who had not yet gotten the coronavirus vaccination could do so as well.
But before they travel to Saudi Arabia, they will receive the complete dose of the vaccine and turn in the certificate to the banks. An overseas vaccine certificate will also be accepted in addition to the NADRA (National Database and Registration Authority) certificate, he insisted.
He made it clear that a family connection between the sponsor and the pilgrim was not required. But, he continued, it was crucial to transmit the pilgrim’s name, Computerized National Identity Card number, and phone number in addition to the payment.
Other official government sources stated that a $45,000 decrease in the costs associated with the Hajj under the Government Hajj Scheme was anticipated. The government would distribute the benefit to pilgrims if the Pakistani rupee did not decline further, they added.
They said the ministry was trying to make the Hajj package cheaper as the negotiation with the Saudi government was under way.
They said after the reduction, the Government Hajj Scheme for the northern region would be from Rs1,175,000 to Rs1,130,000 while it would be from Rs1,1 65,000 to Rs1,120,000 for the southern region.