Union Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi has said the entire Hajj 2022 process in India will be 100 percent digital.
He said the Hajj could not take place in 2020 and this year due to COVID-19 and the decision taken by the Saudi Arabia government in view of the pandemic. The Hajj 2022 will be announced after consultations with different departments concerned in the upcoming Hajj review meeting to be held in New Delhi on October 21, a statement from the Union Minister’s office said.
Officials from the minority affairs, external affairs, health and civil aviation ministries, India’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia, India’s consul general in Jeddah, and other senior officials will be present in the upcoming Hajj review meeting in the national capital, it said.
Arrangements for special training for Hajj 2022 regarding COVID-19 protocols and health and hygiene were being made in India and Saudi Arabia for the pilgrims, it further said.
More than 700 women had applied for Hajj 2021 under without ”Mehram” (male companion) and over 2,100 women applied for Hajj 2020 under the same category. Their applications will be eligible for Hajj 2022 also if they want to go on the pilgrimage, Naqvi said. Other women can also apply for Hajj 2022 under without ”Mehram” category, he said, adding that all women under the category will be exempted from the lottery system.
India sends the second largest number of Hajj pilgrims after Indonesia.