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Indian woman killed in Haj stampede

Hyderabad: A 60-year-old woman from Telangana was among the 717 Haj pilgrims killed in a stampede in the holy city of Mina in Saudi Arabia on Thursday.

An official of the Telangana State Haj Committee told IANS that the deceased woman was identified as Bibi Jaan, a resident of Ranga Reddy district near Hyderabad.

“We have received information about the death of one woman pilgrim,” the official said.

Hailing from Mansoorabad in Ranga Reddy, she had gone for the pilgrimage along with her husband Abdul Majeed and two other family members.

She completed the Haj on Wednesday and was proceeding to take part in stoning of the devil and was injured in the stampede. She was admitted at a hospital in Mina where she succumbed to injuries.

Over 800 people were injured in the tragedy, the worst in 25 years.

S.A. Shukoor, special officer for the Telangana State Haj Committee, is in constant touch with the Consul Haj at the Indian Haj Mission in Jeddah besides Khadim ul Hujjaj of both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.

Shukoor said that apart from this, there was no information about any injury or casualty.

The Khadim ul Hujjaj have been alerted to check all tents in Mina, where the pilgrims from two states are put up.

The State Haj Committee has set up two separate helplines for the two states to provide information about the pilgrims. The helplines will work round-the-clock.

The helpline number of Telangana is 040 – 2321 4193 and the same for Andhra Pradesh is 040 – 2329 8793.

The Haj Committee of India has also set up a 24×7 control room with telephone numbers 022 – 2271 7100 / 2271 7101 / 2271 7102.

Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and Deputy Chief Minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali expressed grief over the tragedy.

They conveyed their heartfelt condolences to the families who have lost their dear ones in the stampede.

The chief minister directed officials to ensure that the Haj pilgrims from the state are safe.

He asked minorities welfare secretary Omar Jaleel and special secretary in CMO Bhupal Reddy to provide all necessary assistance to the pilgrims.

Earlier, a couple from Andhra Pradesh was killed in the crane accident at the Grand Mosque in the holy city of Makkah. Nine Indians were among the over 100 people killed in the tragedy on September 11.

According to the Haj Committee, 2,963 pilgrims from Telangana and 1,819 from Andhra Pradesh have gone for Haj.

A total of 5,436 pilgrims left from the Hyderabad embarkation point and they also include 654 from Karnataka.

Over 136,000 pilgrims from India will be performing Haj this year.