Srinagar: Saudi Government has decided to disallow children below 12 years of age for Hajj in a bid to ensure their safety, the Hajj Committee of India (HCoI), informed.
A circular issued by the HCoI, a copy of which lies with the news agency Kashmir News Observer, reads that it is intimated that the authorities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have decided that children below the age of 12 years are not allowed to proceed for Hajj 1444(H)-2023 consider the fact that it is not appropriate to accompany children under the age of 12 years to ensure their safety.
“In view of the position explained above, no application of children below the age of 12 years as of 30-04-2023 including infants will be entertained for Hajj 1444 2023. Therefore, all Hajj applications of the children below 12 years including infants registered till date will be rejected for Hajj 1444-2023,” the circular reads.
The circular further reads that it is expected that the authorities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia might stipulate further health and administrative guidelines in view of the prevailing conditions. The same shall be notified accordingly in the due course of time.
HCoI member Er Aijaz Hussain said that the decision to disallow children below 12 years of age is aimed at ensuring their safety and the move is part of Hajj policy 2023. He said that new health and administrative guidelines will be issued shortly.
Pertinently, Hajj 2023 has been made cheaper by Rs 80,000 and the pilgrim has to pay only Rs 3, 70,000 against 4.50 lakh paid earlier. Plus, there will be 25 embankments across the country this year while as pilgrims above 70 years of age will be prioritized.