Although the Haj Committee’s term ended on Aug. 15 and less than a month remains for the pilgrim season, the government has not reconstituted the panel
A piquant situation awaits Haj pilgrims this year. With the special chartered flights scheduled to commence from September 25, there is no body in place to oversee the arrangements.
Blame it on Telangana
The three-year term of the 16-member State Haj Committee ended on August 15, but there are no indications yet of it being reconstituted.
In fact, as far back as three months ago, the government was informed of the expiry of the committee’s term and asked to take necessary action. But Telangana developments have obviously taken precedence and none in the government is bothered about the commencement of the Haj season.
Reminders made to Minorities Welfare Minister Syed Ahmadullah have elicited no response too, it is said.
A total of 7,600 pilgrims from Andhra Pradesh will proceed on pilgrimage this year and the arrangements require lot of planning and coordination.
Now the onus will rest on Wakf Board executive officer Abdul Hameed, and the skeletal staff at his disposal.
The Haj camp will begin September 23, two days before the commencement of the special Haj flights.
Prior to that, the Haj Committee is to hold meetings with various departments to finalise arrangements. There is no idea on who will chair these meetings.
This year, pilgrims from two more districts from Karnataka – Raichur and Koppal – have been attached to Andhra Pradesh State contingent, in addition to those from Bidar, Gulbarga and Yadgir.
“All this would add to the workload,” says an official.
In 2009, when the committee’s term had expired just before the commencement of Haj season, the government had constituted a six -member adhoc committee.
Many feel government should undertake a similar exercise now without losing further time to provide better service to the pilgrims.