Muslims from around the world have embarked on the most important journey of their lives. In the next few weeks airlines from around the globe will converge on Saudi Arabia carrying approximately 3 million passengers.
180 Sri Lankan Hajj pilgrims left for Saudi Arabia on Monday night, but not before thanking the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the comprehensive facilities offered to them.
Mohamed Hashim Mohamed Haleem, Sri Lanka’s minister of postal services and Muslim religious affairs, said that this year’s issuing of Hajj visas was smooth due to the new e-Hajj services introduced by the Saudi government.
The minister said the flights of pilgrims this year will be ferried by both Saudi Arabian Airlines and Sri Lankan Airlines. Haleem, who intends to participate in this year’s Hajj, said that the last flight of Sri Lankan pilgrims will leave Colombo on Aug. 7.
Hajj is a pilgrimage all sane and able-bodied Muslims are meant to make at least once in their lives. Muslims from around the globe make the journey to the holy city of Mecca once a year. While Hajj does not begin until August this year some pilgrims have already begun to arrive in Saudi Arabia.
Muslim pilgrims from Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Malaysia and India have already begun arriving for the event.
It is the most coordinated and organised event in the Muslim calendar and involves planning with each countries native Hajj delegation to arrange a timetable that must be open to the whole world.
A logistical nightmare, but one the Saudi Arabia government have invested in to develop into one of the most sophisticated in the world.
Labbayk Allhamu, Labbayk!