10 November 2009, Tuesday, 17:23

First pilgrims left for hadj

author: Eugene Rakhimkulov

The first group of pilgrims from Bashkortostan left for Saudi Arabia to visit the holy Muslim places, the deputy chairman of the Clerical Muslim dept RB Aup Bibarsov reported to the news-agency “Bashinform”. According to him about 350 citizens of Bashkortostan will visit Mecca this year.

“Some people go from Ufa and some – through Kazan and Moscow” – he said – “For example, the Clerical Muslim Dept RB works with the interregional pilgrimage center “IDEL-HADJ”, located in Kazan and being one of five biggest tourist operators in the country, engaged in hadj organization. Two similar operators work in Moscow and other two – in the Northern Caucasus”.

The quote of pilgrims, allocated by the Hadj Ministry of Saudi Arabia for Russia, is about 20 thousand, including 13 thousand vacancies allocated for Caucasian republics and seven thousand- for the central Russian regions. In 2009 more than 400 citizens of Bashkortostan have made hadj. In 2009 this number is less and there are two main reasons for such reluctance: the virus A/H1N1 (the “pig flu”) and the crisis.

The Saudi Arabia’s Hadj Ministry even decided to impose restrictions on entry for the people, older than 65, because of the pig flu, though elderly people always predominated among all those, who would like to go to Mecca. For many people the travel to Saudi Arabia appeared beyond their pockets because of the crisis. The cost of the hadj-missions, offered by “IDEL-HADJ”, makes 75-140 thousand rubles.

The departure of the next groups of pilgrims from Ufa is planned on November 14 and 19. Besides, 85 pilgrims from our Republic will go to hadj with the tourist agency “AIRA-TOUR”. They’ll flight out along the route Ufa-Istanbul-Amman on November 14 and 16.

themes: religion