ISLAMABAD: According to a representative from the Religious Affairs Ministry, after fruitful discussions with the Saudi government, Haj expenses for a single individual this year are anticipated to fall by Rs40,000.
According to a recent statement made by a government official, the Haj package under the government’s programme will drop from Rs1.17 million to Rs1.13 million for the northern region and from Rs1.16 million to Rs1.12 million for the southern region if the rupee remains stable.
The northern region contains Sindh and Balochistan, whereas the southern zone includes Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The discrepancy is brought on by cheaper airfare from the south.
The Saudi government’s decision to increase food prices and rents for lodging in Makkah and Madina made the Hajj costlier, the official responded in response to a question about the reasons for a rise in expenditure this year under the government programme.
He explained that the price of food has increased from Rs 53,440 last year to Rs 100,238 and the price of Haj dues has increased from Rs 302,303 to Rs 356,066.
However, the official went on to say that the rupee’s dropping value was the main cause of the large package. The Saudi government has approved 179,210 Pakistanis to conduct the Haj.
The ministry of religious affairs has chosen to provide 50% of the quota to the latter this year instead of the normal 60% going to the government’s Haj plan and 40% to private operators.