TN requests Centre to increase Hajj pilgrims quota

Chennai: Tamil Nadu government today requested the Centre to increase its quota of Hajj pilgrims for this year and sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention in this regard.

Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa told the Prime Minister that the state Hajj Committee has received 15,032 applications for this year’s pilgrimage, but it had been “allotted 2,585 seats only” by the Hajj Committee of India.

“As per the guidelines for Hajj 2015, out of the quota, 1,699 pilgrims have been selected under the reserved category, while 886 seats have been utilized for the general category pilgrims. This leaves 12,000 disappointed applicants,” she said in a letter to Modi.

Earlier, the Centre had released additional seats over and above the quota, enabling a larger number of pilgrims from Tamil Nadu to perform Hajj–3,696 in 2013 and 2,858 in 2014, she said in the letter which was released by the state government.

“The Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India may be requested to release additional quota for Tamil Nadu to enable more pilgrims to perform the Hajj this year,” she told the Prime Minister.