The cost of Hajj is expected to exceed Rs. 1 million this year, which will make it the most expensive pilgrimage for Pakistanis to date.
According to media reports, the government-funded Hajj is expected to cost up to Rs. 1 million or more, indicating an increase of up to 42.85 percent from the previous cost of Rs. 0.7 million announced earlier this year.
Last year, the cost of Hajj was under Rs. 5 lac.
Due to the significant increase in costs, fewer applications for Hajj have been received this year, as revealed by an official from the Ministry of Religious Affairs. Similarly, private Hajj is expected to cost more than Rs. 1.2 million.
The official said that banks received only 43, 554 applications in the last four days this year as compared to a total quota of 81,132 pilgrims allocated for 2022.
Despite the low turnout, there will be no extension in the deadline of 13 May.
The Ministry of Religious Affairs Ministry stated that 40 percent of the pilgrims will perform Hajj at the expense of the government and 60 percent will do so on their own. It has directed applicants to use its website to get their documents verified.
The ministry has also instructed them to include the certificate of receiving the full dose of the coronavirus vaccine with their applications. It added that the intending pilgrim must submit their passports, health fitness certificates, three photographs, and Rs. 50,000 as a token with their applications.