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Ban to stay on performance of Ummrah for unmarried, jobless persons below age of 40: Ejaz

18 June, 2006

Ban to stay on performance of Ummrah for unmarried, jobless persons below age of 40: Ejaz
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ISLAMABAD: Minister for religious affairs Muhammad Ejaz ul Haq has said ban will remain in place on the unmarried and jobless persons below the age of 40 years to perform ummrah.

He said this while talking to the journalists here Saturday in cafeteria of parliament house.

Ejaz told he had held detailed discussions with the officials of the ministry of Hajj of Saudi Arabia during my recent visit there. " I recommended for increase in Hajj quota for Pakistanis pilgrims to 10000 this year as our population is growing. 1,60000 intending pilgrims will be sent to Hajjaz Muqaddas this year, he added.

It was also decided in a meeting held there that time and schedule will be fixed for stoning Satan in order to avert any mishap. Special training will be provided to Hajjis. Certain restrictions would have to be imposed. Half of Pakistani pilgrims will have to stone Satan on 12 Zil Hijja and the remaining half on 13 Zilhajj.

He went on to say that effective monitoring system will have to be pursued in regard to ummrah. Saudi authorities will make this system more vibrant. Saudi government has complained that over 1 Lakh Pakistani disappeared in Saudi Arabia for the sake of employment who had gone there for performance of Ummrah.

Saudi government has also decided any Saudi citizen who will offer jobs to such Pakistanis will be awarded rigorous imprisonment and fined, he said adding Saudi authorities have imposed ban on jobless and unmarried , in the age group of below 40 years Pakistanis to perform ummrah. However, there will be no bar on married and employed Pakistanis in the age group of below 40 years to perform ummarah if they accompany their parents or produce certificate on their marriage and employment.

Saudi government has asked us to provide the list of 82 ummrah companies so that they could be registered there and their working be monitored.

Ejaz informed that Hajj passport would gradually be turned into machine-readable passport. Ministry of religious affairs has sent a schedule to law ministry to register ummrah operators so that action could be taken against them if they help the ummrah performers disappear in Saudi Arabia.

End.

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