Banks to accept Hajj applications from April 18-26

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ISLAMABAD: Haj applications will be accepted from April 18 to April 26, Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Sardar Muhammad Yousaf said on Sunday

Designated branches of scheduled banks will begin receiving applications under the Government Haj Scheme on Monday and balloting will be held on April 29, Yousaf said.

Over 143,000 Pakistanis are expected to make the pilgrimage this year; 60 per cent of these will perform Haj under the government scheme while 40pc will opt for private Haj organisers, the minister said.

The Haj package will cost Rs261,941 for pilgrims from the ‘south region’ and Rs270,941 for pilgrims from the ‘north region’, he said, adding that no one would be allowed to perform Haj on government expenditure.

Last year’s pilgrimage was marred by two fatal incidents ─ a crane accident and a stampede ─ which caused the deaths of over 2,000 people.

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