Minister Naqvi said, a Haj Review Meeting was held in the Minority Affairs Ministry on October 22 with the Ambassador of India to Saudi Arabia, Consul General in Jeddah, officials from the External Affairs, Civil Aviation and Health Ministries and representatives from airlines.
The annual Haj has become more comfortable and convenient for Indian Muslims due to various important reforms in the entire pilgrimage process undertaken by the Modi government over the last seven years, Union Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said on Thursday.
The decision was taken after Saudi Arabia's Haj and Umrah minister Mohammad Saleh bin Taher Benten telephoned last night and suggested not to send pilgrims from India for Haj this year, Naqvi said.
The annual pilgrimage, which is set to begin this year at the end of July, traditionally draws around 2 million Muslims from around the world for five intense days of worship and rituals in Mecca.
Yousuf Abbas and Abdul Aziz Abbas were going to Saudi Arabia to perform Haj when they were offloaded on Thursday from the Madina-bound flight at Allama Iqbal International Airport on the request of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).
"That retaining this provision also needs to be understood in the light of Consular General of India, Jeddah advice in 2012 for strict screening of disabled persons in view of instances of many such people indulging in begging which is strictly prohibited in Saudi Arabia."
The reduction will be applicable to passages on Air India, Saudi Airlines and Flynas
The apex court adjourned the hearing in the case till February 19.
Owaisi said he himself had demanded withdrawal of the Haj subsidy long ago.
The Indian government on Tuesday withdrew the subsidy to Hajj pilgrims in accordance to a 2012 Supreme Court
The govt said the decision is part of agenda of empowering minorities without trying to appease them.
Haj Samiti secretary RP Singh has blamed the contractor for the incident while saying that an action would be taken against him.
"It is god's grace that Taj Mahal and Charminar were already built, otherwise he (Modi) would have claimed that he had constructed them"
Addressing the nation through the 39th edition of his 'Mann ki Baat' radio programme, Prime Minister Modi said around 1,300 women have applied to visit Haj without a male guardian.
The cut in funds meant for subsidy will be used for educational empowerment and welfare of Muslims, the source said.
Former Indian cricketer Mohammed Azharuddin plays a shot during an exhibition cricket match between BCCI President's XI and BCCI Secretary's XI, on the eve of the Board’s 90th Annual General Meeting, at Eden Garden...PTI Photo
BCCI secretary Jay Shah during an exhibition cricket match between BCCI President's XI and BCCI Secretary's XI, on the eve of the Board’s 90th Annual General Meeting, at Eden Garden in Kolkata.
Former Indian cricketer and BCCI President Saurav Ganguly during an exhibition cricket match between BCCI President's XI and BCCI Secretary's XI, on the eve of the Board’s 90th Annual General Meeting, at Eden Garden...PTI Photo
BCCI secretary Jay Shah during an exhibition cricket match between BCCI President's XI and BCCI Secretary's XI, on the eve of the Board’s 90th Annual General Meeting, at Eden Garden in Kolkata.PTI Photo
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