Hajj Pilgrimage: Saudi Arabia's Initiatives To Facilitate Umrah Experience For Indian Muslims

Hajj Pilgrimage: Saudi Arabia's Initiatives To Facilitate Umrah Experience For Indian Muslims

The official "Nusuk" platform, known for its user-friendly features, is one of the most effective solutions launched by Saudi Arabia in collaboration with the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah and the Saudi Tourism Authority.

Rahul MUpdated: Thursday, December 28, 2023, 01:55 PM IST
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Saudi Arabia Eases Hajj Yatra For Indians |

Over the past year, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has taken significant steps, implementing a series of measures and decisions to facilitate Muslims' arrival from around the world for the Umrah pilgrimage and visits to the Prophet's Mosque. This is particularly noteworthy for countries with a substantial share of pilgrims to the holy land.

Nearly 2 million Indian pilgrims at Umrah

According to statistical data for the year 1444 H, Indian Muslim Umrah performers ranked third highest among countries, reaching 1.8 million Umrah visitors. An expected yearly increment is expected to reach around 1.37 million visitors.

Saudi Arabia-India relationship

The Republic of India holds great importance for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in terms of political, economic, and technological relations. The religious aspect of the relationship with New Delhi is a focal point for Riyadh, where Muslims surpass 200 million.

Minister Dr Al-Rabiah's visit to New Delhi

The significance of India for the Umrah sector is highlighted in the first visit by Saudi Arabia's Minister of Hajj and Umrah, Dr Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al-Rabiah, in early December. During the visit, His Excellency met with senior Indian government officials to explore joint opportunities to overcome challenges and increase the number of Muslim visitors from India. The Saudi Minister did not limit his meetings to Indian officials, but also prioritised engagements with investors and agencies in the Indian Umrah, travel and tourism sector on the sidelines of the 'Introduction Meeting' held by the unified government platform 'Nusuk' (nusuk.sa) from 4-6 December.

The event aimed to showcase the unique services and unprecedented facilities offered by the platform to Muslim guests from around the world, including those from India. Dr Al-Rabiah heard their concerns, outlined initial solutions to meet the needs of Indian Muslims and set the stage for collaboration.

Register on "Nusuk"

The official "Nusuk" platform, known for its user-friendly features, is one of the most effective solutions launched by Saudi Arabia in collaboration with the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah and the Saudi Tourism Authority.

The platform collaborates with over 300 partners in accommodation, transport, air tickets and logistics services. It simplifies the procedure of obtaining an electronic visa to automate access procedures for Umrah and visits to the Prophet's Mosque, regardless of the type of visa issued.

Mecca & Medina visit

The platform also assists with visits to historical sites in Mecca and Medina, providing an exceptional spiritual experience for guests of the Rahman throughout the year. This is in line with Saudi Arabia's commitment to ease access for the global community, with a focus on India. Among these decisions is the availability of Umrah and visits throughout the year, except during the Hajj season.

Women may travel without male guardian

Moreover, women can perform Umrah without a male guardian, thus widening the possibilities for many Muslims to undertake the pilgrimage.

About high-speed Haramain train

To enhance the Umrah experience for visitors in general and ease visits to Mecca and Medina, the Saudi government introduced the high-speed Haramain train. This electrically powered train operates at speeds of up to 300 km/h, offering various routes between Mecca and Medina.

The train provides speed, safety, and comfort for travellers, ranking among the world's top 10 fastest trains. It set a record between March 23 and April 25, 2023, carrying 930,000 passengers.

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