The first batch of Holy Land pilgrims comprising 46 members left on a nine-day pilgrimage to Israel, Jordan, Palestine and Egypt from Hyderabad on Thursday.

The pilgrimage for Christians has been arranged by Jerusalem Yatra Ministries (JY Ministries), a non-profit organisation in association with Thomas Cook and Fultron Bank. The JYM is arranging the pilgrimage at a cost of Rs. 55,000 per head against Rs. 70,000 charged by commercial tour operators. The next batch of pilgrims leaves on January 5.