Hajj policy 2023: application deadline, cost and procedure


ISLAMABAD – The federal government has announced the Hajj policy for this year to take the pilgrims to the holy land.

Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Mufti Abdul Shakoor revealed the official details for this year’s Hajj scheduled to take place after few months.

Application Deadline

According to official details, Hajj applications can be submitted from March 16 to March 31, 2023.

Where to Submit Applications

Applications for Hajj can be submitted in 14 designated banks of the country while the names of the pilgrims selected for going to Hajj this year will be announced in the first week of April. Those who are not selected will get their money back in 7 days from the banks.

A waiting list of Hajj pilgrims will also be made in which only 0.5 percent of official Hajj quota will be reserved. Applicants must possess National Identity Cards and Pakistani Machine-Readable Passports valid until December 26, 2023.

Cost of Hajj

Pilgrims in northern part of Pakistan would have to pay Rs1.175 million for Hajj while people in southern part will be charged Rs1.165 million as announced by the minister who mentioned that the Hajj cost for Pakistan is below India, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. 

People availing the sponsorship scheme from the northern region, including Peshawar, Islamabad, Lahore, Multan and Rahim Yar Khan, would spend about $4,325 while other pilgrims from the same zone would be required to pay an estimated amount of Rs1,175,000.

For those in the southern belt, Hajj would cost nearly Rs1,165,000 and $4,285. The minister highlighted that the cost of Hajj has increased due to rupee devaluation.

Total Number of Pilgrims

Pakistan’s quota for Hajj 2023 is 179,210 pilgrims. This is the first time that the government of Saudi Arabia has restored the number of pilgrims to pre-Covid levels. 

It is to be highlighted that 50 percent quota has been reserved for Sponsorship scheme which is a special facility given to Hajj pilgrims seeking foreign exchange from abroad in the specific dollar account of the religious affairs ministry.

Under the scheme, overseas Pakistanis would be able to get exemption from the usual balloting process but depositing dollars from Pakistan is not allowed. This facility would be available on ‘first come first serve’ basis.

Moreover, three percent (2,688) of the total seats under the government Hajj scheme will be reserved for hardship cases like newborns or broken families.

Age Limit

There is no age limit for Pakistani pilgrims this year as the government of Saudi Arabia has removed the upper limit of 65 years.

Need of Mahram

Under the Hajj policy, a mahram (chaperone) must accompany female pilgrims but women over 45 years of age can go without mahram.

Who is Ineligible

Pilgrims who have performed Hajj in the last five are not eligible to apply in the regular Hajj scheme this year but Mahram of women going to Hajj for the first time will be exempt from this condition.

The Hajj will take place in June this year and the government of Saudi Arabia is finalizing the details for the biggest religious event of the kingdom.

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