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Decision on Haj review committee recommendations soon: Naqvi

New Delhi, Oct 14 (IANS) Union Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Saturday said that his ministry would soon take a “positive decision” about the recommendations made by the Haj review committee for formulating the new Haj policy.

“We have got the recommendations as also some objections to a few recommendations. Some of these are very valid points. We will soon take a positive decision regarding this,” Naqvi said after a delegation of the Haj Committee of India members met him and handed over a resolution.

The Ministry had formed a committee headed by retired IAS officer Afzal Amanullah in February this year to review the Haj policy with a view to make it more streamlined. The committee submitted its report recently.

Some of the main recommendations of the committee include reducing the number of embarkation points from 21 to nine, allowing women above 45 years of age to perform Haj without a ‘mehram’ and abolish the reserved quota for applicants above 70 years of age and the fourth timers.

The Ministry is currently considering the recommendations and has not taken a final decision.

The Haj Committee had held a meeting on Friday in Mumbai and discussed the recommendations by the review committee.

Haj Committee Chairman Mehboob Ali Qaiser, who led the delegation, said that they have given a resolution to the Minister against some of the recommendations made by the review committee.

“Our main contention is that the number of embarkation points — from where pilgrims board the planes to Jeddah — should not be reduced to nine, at least for Haj 2018,” he said.

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