A HEARTY WELCOME TO ALL THE DELEGATES A presentation on TRAINING FOR TRAINERS PROGRAMME -- HAJ 2011 by Faiz Ahmad KidwaiConsul General of India, Jeddah Muslomvoiceofindia.wordpress.com
Topics covered • Haj • Indian Pilgrims – perspective & composition • Scenario before departure • Arrival, logistics and accommodations • Conditions in Mina, Madinahand Makkah • Facilities • Problems and Issues • Departure phase
Indian Pilgrims in Perspective Approximately 3 million pilgrims performed the Haj during Haj 2010. 174,168 pilgrims, who came from India, constituted the 2nd largest group after Indonesia. 126,018 (approx 72.35%) arrived through HCOI and approx 48,150 came through PTOs. During Haj 2011 approximately 175,000 Indian pilgrims are expected to arrive from India.
Uniqueness of Indian Haj Management • It is the biggest operation of its kind handled by GOI outside the Indian borders. • Extreme diversity among the Indian pilgrims in terms of region, language, cuisine, socio-economic backgrounds and even Schools of Islamic Jurisprudence. • The behaviour of the pilgrims also differs from one region to another. • Wide differences in the preferences for accommodation in Makkah. • Despite facing these widespread diversities, the Indian Haj Management has evolved itself into a mature and planned managerial exercise.
Pre-Departure • Proper Orientation of intending pilgrims is the most important factor for their successful completion of Haj. • Pilgrims should be aware of the accommodation scenarios in Makkah and Madinah and the services to be expected in the two Holy Cities. • Trainers, State Haj Committees or any other agency should not unnecessarily raise the expectations of Hajis or give them misleading information. • The passport of pilgrims, immigration card and meningitis certificate must be kept carefully. • Pilgrims should carry Health Cards. • Please carry a mobile handset from home and buy a Saudi SIM card immediately after arrival. • Do the same for each member of your group.
Pre-Departure • The baggage should be of standard size and dimensions. It should not contain any edible or inflammable items, Cartons, Buckets and water cans should be avoided strictly . • Carrying of drugs, contraband items, alcoholic preparations and intoxicants including KhashKhash (poppy seeds) are banned. • Pilgrims should never leave their hand baggage out of sight and not carry anything given by strangers or anyone without prior checking the contents. • Pilgrims can frequently check the Consulate’s website for any updates: www.cgijeddah.com
A SERIOUS WARNING PILGRIMS/DEPUTATIONIST SHOULD BE WARY AGAINST CUNNING SMUGGLERS WHO TRY EVERY TRICK TO LURE UNSUSPECTING FIRST TIME TRAVELLERS AND USE THEM AS CARRIERS FOR THEIR CONTRABAND. TRAVELLERS MUST KNOW THAT DRUG SMUGGLING AND TRAFFICKING IN SAUDI ARABIA INVITES SUMMARY DEATH PENALTY.
MADINAH & JEDDAH - PORTS OF ARRIVAL HAJ 2010 • 70,321 Pilgrims arrived in Madinah • 55,697 pilgrims arrived at Jeddah Haj Terminal • This year it is expected that around 50% of pilgrims would arrive at Jeddah and another 50% of pilgrims would arrive at Madinah. • Arrival from 19 + (2 Hub & Spoke) Embarkation points in 450 flights spread over 35 days. • In the peak period 21 flights per day came from India.
At Airport • The hand baggage should never be left out of sight. • Money should Not be kept at one place. • Beware of thieves/pick-pockets. • The pilgrims should contact the Indian officials and volunteers for any assistance. • Indian Haj Office and Indian Dispensary remain open round the clock at the airport. • Wait for your turn, have patience. • Identify baggage before they are loaded on buses.
Allotment of Accommodation in Makkah • On the basis of flight allotment accommodation is allotted to the pilgrims. • Computer Cell of the Consulate is connected to HCoI / Moassasa and all the state Haj Committees. Data of pilgrims are exchanged on a real time basis. • HCoI will provide the reported pilgrims information at least 24 hours before the flight departure. • Consulate will allot the accommodation as soon as it gets the information and will be uploaded on Consulate’s website. • State Haj Committee or the Embarkation points will be provided with a unique User ID and Password to access the interface developed by the Consulate. • The interface will generate the sticker as per the requirement of Moassasa and Ministry of Haj which can be pasted on the passport.
Bar Code Sticker to be pasted on pilgrims passport before departure in India.
Identities issued to pilgrims Identities issued to pilgrims
Baggage The baggage of Indian pilgrims, which comes in all forms and sizes, is the biggest obstacle for an efficient management of the air & Transport operations. The luggage of Indian Hajis can comprise of anything ranging from sacks, cartons, pans and buckets to even edible items like pickles, rice, onions and oil and even fresh meat. During Haj 2010, average weight carried by the Hajis in outgoing phase was 90 Kg as against the permissible limit of 45 kg. In many cases excess baggage have to be left behind and given to charity. Bus drivers and Airlines refuse co-operation. The Saudi authorities have taken strong note against the Indian pilgrims carrying heavy baggage. Travel light and carry standard baggage.
Services provided in Buildings at Makkah Space upto 4 sq meters per pilgrim. Metal frame beds, mattresses, pillows and bed sheets. ZamZam is provided on complimentary basis by Saudi Authorities. Bathroom is generally Western style. Kitchen may be equipped with cooking range and filled gas cylinder (first time). Refills are to be arrange by Hajis themselves.
Constraints of hiring Accommodation of pilgrims in Makkah • Haram Expansion. • 2000 buildings already demolished (5,00,000 Sq Mt) another 1000 buildings earmarked for demolition. • Haj-2008 experience:- Problems faced with areas like BathaQuresh, Hail Hijra, DwarKudai, Nuzha and Sheesha. • Downgradation:- Approximately 5 thousand pilgrims may be downgraded this year. No refund of differential amount will be paid by Indian Haj Mission in Saudi Arabia.
Advisory while visiting the Haram Shareef • Keep emotions under control. • Police in civil dress; any unusual act is always noticed. • Pilgrims should not touch or pick any thing fallen on the ground or that does not belong to him. • Pilgrims should NOT enter into arguments and quarrels with police or religious volunteers deployed in the Holy Mosques for any reason. • Pilgrims should always carry a plastic bag to keep their sandals/shoes. • Avoid taking too much cash or costly belongings; Beware of thieves.
Advisory while visiting the HaramShareef • Pilgrims should always wear identification bracelet and carry their I-Card, medical card and mobile phone. • Remember the entrance gate; its colour, number and clock towers as the landmarks. • For any help Task Force officers clad in blue jackets marked ‘INDIA’ are present outside the HaramShareef at all gates. • Always first look left and then right while crossing roads. • Remember Bus Route No. when waiting for bus at HaramShareef.
Important At Mina the Indian Consulate sets up an office at Mina along with a small dispensary. Boards of South Asian Moassasa are yellow. Look for it in Mina and Arafat. Pilgrims should only go to the Jamarat at times allocated for them and do not carry luggage/wheelchair. Find your tent by the Maktab No. Maktab camps are not in sequence
Mina, Arafat, Muzdalifa and Jamarat • Core Haj Pilgrimage happens in Mina, Muzdalifa and Arafat region where all the pilgrims ( more than 30 lakhs) congregate for a period of 5 days from 8th ZilHijja– 12 ZilHijja(04 Nov – 08 Nov, 2011*). Pilgrims camp in Mina area and move from there to Arafat on9th ZilHijja. Mina is located around 8 KM from Makkah and Arafat is further 15 KM from Mina, Arafat to Muzdalifah is 9 km and Muzdalifah to Mina is 7km. • Indian Haj Office is setup on 7th ZilHijja, before the arrival of pilgrims at Mina and closes on 13 ZilHijja after all the pilgrims leave Mina. • Scarcity of space; maintaining sanitation; availability of hygienic water and food; movement of pilgrims from one point to another are the major issues of concern. * Subject to the sighting of moon
Continued….. Indian Haj Office in Mina : • Space scarcities of pilgrims are taken up with Moassasa/ Moallims. • Transport problems of pilgrims are taken up with Moassasa / Moallims. • Taking care of sick pilgrims • Guiding pilgrims who miss their way and approach the office. Local Indian volunteers are also available in Mina. • Printing of maps of all Indian camps in Mina and distributing it to pilgrims • Completing formalities of pilgrims who pass away in Mina. • Interfacing with Moassasa to tackle various issues related to Moallims. • Jamarath Task Force formed by the Indian Haj Mission ensures that pilgrims are aware of the do and don’ts while going doing the ritual of stoning the Shaitan.
Continued….. Indian Haj Office in Arafat • Ritual in Arafat is only for a single day. (9th ZilHijjah) • Office camp in Arafat oversees the arrangements made by Moallims for pilgrims • Guide pilgrims who miss their way • Report any outsider occupying space at Mina tent to Moallim or IHM Officer. • Moallims only provide complementary snacks in Mina and hence make your own arrangement for food. • Be prepared early for departure to Mina by bus. • Avoid going to ‘JabaleRahma’ at Arafat due to heavy rush and getting lost. • Reaching early to Muzdalifa from Arafat is necessary to avoid difficulties. Youngsters walking is preferable as traffic system may collapse.
Table showing deaths in five years Haj • Cars travel very fast and cannot easily slowdown or stop. • Drivers do not expect pedestrians on the road. • Traffic flows in opposite direction as compared to India - LOOK LEFT FIRST THEN RIGHT .(Unlike India) .
Measures to avoid stampedes • Focused & Sustained Orientation of Pilgrims – Rituals & Safety Measures • Women, old & infirm Hajis could delegate the Rami to others • Do not carry children, wheel-chairs & luggage • Do not squat in the areas around the Jamarat Bridge
ACCOMMODATION IN MADINAH • 8 days stay. • Single category. • Distance not more than 850m from outer • periphery of Mosque. • Contact Indian Haj Mission Branch Offices, • Dispensary for any assistance. • Do not compare category or quality of Makkah accommodation with Madinah. Both are completely different.
Departure Phase • DOs: • Check your exact flight details, date, timings, etc. • Keep the baggage within the permissible weight limits • Any excess baggage should be booked as Cargo in advance • Let Moallim handle your luggage in a manner he finds best. • Loading of your luggage starts 12 hours before flight departure time. • Please have patience and extend co-operation to Indian officials in the event of delayed / cancelled flights. • DONTs: • Do not go to Haram to pray while your luggage is loaded • Do not insist on change of flight or bus. • In past, Indian pilgrims have missed flight due to delay in loading luggage.
Agencies to approach for the Pilgrims in case of any problem/ Issues:
Advisory For Pilgrims during Stay in the Kingdom IT IS ADVISABLE FOR PILGRIMS TO BUY A MOBILE PHONE ON ARRIVAL. SIM CARDS ARE AVAILBALE FOR 20 – 50 SR. PLEASE GIVE ONE HANDSET TO YOUR LADY COMPANION - MOTHER / SISTER / WIFE / DAUGHTER. DO NOT PICK UP ANYTHING WHICH DOES NOT BELONG TO YOU. DO NOT INDULGE IN DEMOSTRATIONS AND PROTESTS. DO NOT DISTRIBUTE LITERATURE OF ANY KIND. UMRAH ON FIRST ARRIVAL, KNOW YOUR BUILDING WELL OTHERWISE YOU MAY LOOSE YOUR WAY. KNOW ROAD FROM BLUDING TO HARAM. KNOW WHICH GATE OF HARAM YOU ENTERED CLOCK OUTSIDE GATE No.1 (BAB ABDULAZIZ) IS THE BEST LANDMARK.
DIRECTION OF TRAFFIC FLOW IN SAUDI ARABIA IS OPPOSITE TO THE DIRECTION OF TRAFFIC FLOW IN INDIA. ACCIDENTS MIGHT HAPPEN IF THE PILGRIMS ARE NOT CONCIOUS ABOUT THIS. DO NOT ALLOW OUTSIDERS INSIDE THE ROOM. YOU MAY BE BLAMED FOR ANY THEFT OF LOSS OF YOUR CO-PILGRIMS. DO NOT TRAVEL ALONE IN TAXIS. THEFT IS VERY COMMON IN HOLY SITES AND HENCE BE CAREFUL WITH YOUR VALUABLES. KNOW YOUR NEAREST BRANCH OFFICE. KEEP NOTE OF IMPORTANT PHONE NUMBERS. LEAVE COPIES OF ALL IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS LIKE PASSPORT WITH RELATIVES IN INDIA. ALWAYS CARRY A HANDBAG AND WRITE YOUR COVER NO., NAME, BLDG NO., PHONE NO., ADDRESS ETC. BE PATIENT AND DO NOT REACT. Continued Advisory For Pilgrims during Stay in the Kingdom
Medical Advisory • A THOROUGH MEDICAL CHECK UP AT HOME. • HAVE A MEDICAL CARD WITH YOU WITH THE ILLNESS FOR WHICH YOU TAKE MEDICINES. • REQUEST DOCTOR TO WRITE GENERIC NAME AND NOT TRADE • NAMES ON THE MEDICAL CARD. • CARRY AT LEAST SEVEN DAYS MEDICINE STOCK • CARRY ALL YOUR RECENT LAB, ECG ETC REPORTS • CARRY FEW TABLETS FOR ACHES AND PAINS • PRACTICE WALKING FOR ATLEAST ONE HOUR EVERY DAY FOR 3 MONTHS BEFORE PILGRIMAGE. • USE WELL FITTING AND COMFORTABLE SHOES • CARRY SPARE PAIR OF SPECTACLES • REGULARLY WASH YOUR HANDS WITH SOAPS • DRINK LOTS OF WATER AND FLUIDS. EAT MODERATELY. • BRING MOBILE HANDSETS AND USE LOCAL SIM CARDS FOR EACH
USE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY • Extensive information for Indian Haj pilgrims is put on Consulate’s website www.cgijeddah.com • Pilgrims arrival schedule is put on website as soon as manifesting is complete. • Accommodation details of all pilgrims in Makkah such as building and room numbers, contact numbers are available on the CGI’s website on arrival. • Please note the important phone numbers of Indian Haj Mission and Branch Offices.
Consulate General of India Jeddah Thank You