ISLAMABAD – The Ministry of Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony announced on Monday that for the Hajj pilgrimage in 2024, there is no longer a requirement for a COVID-19 vaccine.
The ministry had earlier confirmed that the aspiring Hajj pilgrims would have to show proof of Covid vaccination and should have taken at least one dose of the vaccine.
However, as part of the fresh announcement, the requirement has been waived off in a major relief for the pilgrims as many of them are aged and were avoiding the vaccine for health concerns.
Meanwhile, the banks across the country are receiving applications from Hajj applicants and the procedure will continue until December 12. Notably, Pakistan has been allotted a quota of around 179,000 seats by the Saudi government for this year.
For next year around 89, 000 people will go for Hajj under the government scheme while the private Hajj operators will also be having a similar quota. In a fresh move, women have been permitted by the government to perform Hajj without a mahram under certain conditions for the first time.
The caretaker minister for religious affairs had earlier announced that the government had reduced the Hajj cost by Rs 1,00,000 and further Rs 50,000 would be reimbursed to the pilgrims.