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Date for filing hajj applications extended: Minister for religious affairs

Minister for religious affairs Hamid Saeed Kazmi while voicing fears on possible imposition of ban on performance of Hajj by the persons in the age group of over 65 years, children below the age of 12 years and pregnant women in the wake of swine flu threat has said date for filing hajj application therefore has been extended

He said this while addressing a press conference here Wednesday in the ministry of religious affairs. Saudi government had not informed Pakistan formally in this respect so far, he told.

Hajj applications received so far in respect of persons in age group of above 65 years stand at 14000 while Hajj application received uptill now in regard to children below 12 years come to 7000. Applications had witnessed decline due to machine-readable passport, IDPs and bad economic situation, he added.

Tour operators had been categorized this year, he said adding 619 private companies filed the applications while hajj quota was allotted to 589 companies under different companies.

Responding to a question he said cabinet committee constituted on the issue of hajj quota for parliamentarians would soon present report to prime minister.

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