Jeddah: The managing Indian Haj affairs in holy sites in Saudi Arabia is not an easy task as pilgrims come from various diversities and cultural backgrounds, managing Indian Hajis is equal to the mini world, commented Dr. Ausaf Sayeed, Indian Ambassador in Saudi Arabia.
He said that from language to food, Indian Haj mission is making efforts to facilitate smooth and hassle-free Haj as much as it can.
Addressing Press Conference on Haj 2019 along with Consul General Md. Noor Rahman Sheikh here on Saturday, he said the mission is focusing on the quality of food and constantly discussing with Muslims in this regard. Also, the Indian government to avail train service for all its pilgrims.
Ambassador said that Indian Haj mission in Saudi Arabia adopting digital technology to reach out a massive number of pilgrims as part of Government of India’s initiative of Digital India.
With the Introduction of Haj App, Indian diplomats in Saudi Arabia bridging with pilgrims not only to facilitate a smooth and hassle-free Haj operation but also received grievances and feedbacks to improve the service.
The App – Indian Haj Information System- developed by the consulate enhanced to receive feedback, a grievance from Hajis, Ambassador said. Currently, it receives feedback in English, Hindi and Urdu, regional languages will be incorporated later, he told.
Envoy added that besides App, regularly updated website and social media channels, toll-free numbers and exclusive In-house Youtube channel connects the officials and pilgrims.
Ambassador briefed that app also connects with the pilgrims to Haj service coordinators known as Qadimul Hajjaj of their respective states. Qadimul Hajjaj is government employees who were deputed to assist pilgrims during Haj season.
Explaining about medical facilities to visiting pilgrims, Ausaf Sayeed said that health status and medical history of pilgrims is being stored at online “e-MASIHA” (Medical Assistance System for Indian Hajis Abroad). E-MASIHA would retrieve pilgrims health information to apply appropriate treatment whenever he or she visits Indian medical facilities during Haj.
The total of 4 hospitals with a bed capacity of 90 beds established in Makkah and Madinah besides 19 dispensaries to treat Indian pilgrims, Ambassador added.
Ausaf Sayeed informed that Government of India has been debuting 625 officials from various ministries from back home to Saudi Arabia for Haj assistance among them 101 were female officials.
“We have set up an exclusive office and dispensary which is manned by lady staff itself for single woman pilgrims, above age 45, coming for Haj”, the ambassador added.
This year 2332 single women coming for Haj. In a bid to empower Muslim women, the Narendra Modi government has removed the restriction on single women pilgrimage and encourage them to apply for Haj.
Ausaf Sayeed told that Saudi Arabian mobile SIM card is being provided to pilgrims in India itself which can be activated in their buildings in Madinah and Makkah after recording their biometrics, which is mandatory to issue SIM cards in Saudi Arabia,
This year total of 2 lakh of Indian pilgrims coming for Haj among them 1.4 lakh through government arm HCI and remaining through private haj operators.
By Mr. Irfan