The Ministry of Religious Affairs has unveiled its Hajj policy for 2024, designed to bring a revolutionary transformation to the pilgrimage journey for Pakistani pilgrims.

Caretaker Religious Affairs Minister Aneeq Ahmed announced this game-changing policy, which will be presented to the cabinet for approval within the next 10 days.

The most striking feature is the introduction of a short Hajj option, where pilgrims have the flexibility to go for Hajj from 18 to 30 days, which empowers pilgrims to customise their journey as per their preference.

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QR codes for suitcases

The new policy also introduces technological advances in which each Hajj pilgrim will be provided with two specially designed suitcases adorned with QR codes. These QR codes will contain essential information such as the pilgrim’s name, passport number, residence, school number, and other pertinent details. This innovation aims to streamline logistics and enhance security during the pilgrimage.

Special Mobile Package

In a significant step towards connectivity, the ministry has secured an agreement with a Saudi Arabian mobile phone company to offer a special mobile package exclusively for Hajj pilgrims. Priced at Rs 4,000, it enables pilgrims to make audio and video calls, ensuring they can stay in touch with their families back in Pakistan throughout their Hajj journey.

Minister Aneeq Ahmed expressed his optimism about these advancements, stating, “Now Pakistani pilgrims will not be lost in the crowd. These changes are designed to simplify the Hajj experience, enhance communication, and provide pilgrims with peace of mind.”

Additionally, the Saudi government has offered official residences for Pakistani pilgrims, further easing their accommodations during their sacred journey.