Hajj 2020- Hajj during the Pandemics
- Starting today authorities will impose a ban on entering holy sites without a permit as the Kingdom braces for holding a limited pilgrimage this year due to fears of the new coronavirus.According to an earlier statement from an Interior Ministry official source, the restriction will come into effect from the 28th of Dhul Qadah, Islamic lunar month and runs until 12 Dhul Hijjah.
- Violations are punishable by a fine of SR10,000 that will be doubled in case of repetition. Security personnel will be on duty on all roads leading to the holy sites to prevent violations and detect any illegal attempt to enter the places during the designated period as well as apply related penalties to offenders.
- Saudi Arabia has decided to allow only a limited number of 10,000 domestic pilgrims to perform Hajj this year in the wake of the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. Around 2.5 million foreign and domestic pilgrims had performed Hajj last year.
- Out of the total 10,000 pilgrims, 70 percent will be foreigners residing in the Kingdom while the remaining 30 percent are Saudis.
- Preparations are under way to set up pilgrims’ grouping areas and check points at various entry points to the holy city of Makkah. Entry to the holy city and the holy sites will be restricted only for those who have Hajj permit effective from July 19 (Dhul Qada 28).
- At the entry points, veterinary teams have been tasked to ensure the safety and sound health of livestock being transported to the holy city as part of preparations for an epidemic free Hajj.
- Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance has completed a major portion of the works of the western courtyards of the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah and is expected to hand over shortly to the concerned authorities prior to the start of the Hajj pilgrimage.According to the information obtained by Okaz/Saudi Gazette, more than 90 of the project covering on an area of about 95,000 square meters with full lighting works has already been completed.
- At present, work is under way to link sound and electronic systems between the Prophet’s Mosque and the courtyard, which has the capacity to accommodate more than 80,000 worshipers.
Also read:My Hajj reflection –Hajj 2019