Scrapping Hajj subsidy

The move will hit the lower middle class pilgrims who had submitted Hajj forms on the earlier rates. If it was to happen this way, it should have happened before the application forms were submitted

Haroon Bashir Kar
Srinagar, Publish Date: Jan 18 2018 10:53PM | Updated Date: Jan 18 2018 10:53PM
Scrapping Hajj subsidy

The eighty five-year old Hajj Subsidy is scrapped by the government of India from this year. The announcement came as a surprise to thousands of devotees who are to go on a pilgrimage this year. The social media was flooded with comments from all the sections of society; Muslims praised the move for different reasons. Islamic scholars have been saying that the subsidy amount shouldn’t be used for Hajj purpose since Hajj is an obligation only for those who can afford it. There are some who refer to the extremist statements and concerns by many other elements over the subsidy provided to the Muslims. The Supreme Court in the year 2012 has directed that the Hajj subsidy be removed phase wise in ten years. Though people are expressing satisfaction over the use of subsidised amount for uplifting and educating the minorities but the demand of global tendering for carrying the programme is equally important. Since it becomes the monopoly, people are made to pay a hefty amount for the pilgrimage in the system already devised. For Umrah Services, people only pay 70 to 90 thousand for 20-25 days which includes everything from boarding lodging to airfare. The move shouldn’t have come all of a sudden post the submission of forms, if it would have come prior form submission, it would not have surprised many. Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi’s statement that 1.75 lakhs would still perform hajj would be put to test soon. Most affected with the move would be lower middle class people who submitted form after collecting the pre required amount but now have to pay fifty thousand more. This surely would make many think again and those who don’t possess the extra amount would surely withdraw to withhold their dignity. The move should have either come prior to the notification or should have been framed for the next year. 


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