Agartala: Muslim pilgrims from Tripura along with their near and dear ones gathered at the Agartala Airport before leaving for Hajj, an annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca.
Performing Hajj has been a lifetime dream for all member of the team, including 20 women.
A special prayer was conducted at the airport before the team left for Mumbai from where they are supposed to fly to Mecca on September 1 by a special Air India flight.
Tripura’s Minority Welfare Minister Sahid Chowdhury and members of the State Hajj Committee came to the airport to see off the pilgrims who will be returning to the state after 45 days.
“Allah is taking us for Hajj and we are happy. We are dedicating everything in the hand of Allah who will keep us accordingly,” said Praccha Bibi, one of the female members of this year’s Hajj team of Tripura that has around nine percent Muslim in its 3.7 million populations.
Meantime, 70 -year-old Farid Mia, farmer from Bangladesh bordering Rahimpur village said: “We are leaving for Hajj to visit Mecca so that we can dedicate our life to the Allah and it was my lifetime wish. We shall pray for world peace to the all mighty.”
The gathered family member’s of pilgrims expressed their satisfaction at the arrangement made for smooth journey and viewed that the message of Hajj is peace and which is fundamental preaching of Islam.
“Hajj message is world peace and for humanity. I think this year’s Hajj gathering considering the world scenario will pray effectively for world peace and what is going around the world in the name of Jihhad will also be condemned by the Hajj pilgrims there. So overall world peace, humanity and divinity toward Allah is the main objective for going to Hajj,” said Baharul Islam Majumder, founder member of the Munsur Ali Foundation that working in the state for the development of the minority.
Hajj is a mandatory religious duty for Muslims that must be carried out at least once in their lifetime by all adult Muslims who are physically and financially capable of undertaking the journey, and is the fifth pillar of Islam and the most significant manifestation of Islamic faith and unity.
This year some 136,000 Indians are likely visit Mecca to perform Hajj and for which Air India, the national carrier of India will ply 230 special flights.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation provides subsidised air travel to pilgrims performing Haj through Haj Committee of India.
The Haj subsidy is a subsidy provided by Government of India to Indian Muslims to be able to perform Haj in Mecca. The subsidy includes domestic travel, meals, medical care, lodging assistance along with airfare subsidy.
Saudi Arabia is expecting around 1.33 million people from across the world for this year’s Hajj pilgrimage.