Hajj Corporation reaches quota limit, begins registration for 2015

The Hajj Corporation has reached the limit of its quota of 370 slots for this year’s Hajj pilgrims as hundreds continued to queue outside its registration offices in Dharubaaruge.

The announcement that the limit has been reached in the early hours of Tuesday led to voices of discord among the hundreds in line. Police later assisted in dispersing the crowds of would-be pilgrims gathered at the location.

The state owned Hajj Corporation has reserved 30 of the 400 slots it received – half of the total quota allowed to the Maldives from the Saudi Arabian government – for the security forces and other officials who will be performing Hajj while assisting pilgrims.

The remaining 400 slots are reserved for those who wish to apply to join the pilgrimage through private hajj groups, though the Anti Corruption Commission has called for the groups’ bidding process to be revised.

Each pilgrim needs to pay MVR 69,965 (US$4,537) as total payment to the Hajj Corporation. Those who have previously performed the Hajj pilgrimage are not eligible to apply via the state corporation.

On Tuesday morning, the Hajj Corporation commenced accepting applications and payments from those who wishes to perform Hajj pilgrimage in the next year.

Under a programme termed ‘Long term initiative to fulfill Hajj pilgrimage saving package’, the corporation will be accepting applications for 2015 until 2pm on Wednesday afternoon (March 5).


Government to establish state-owned Hajj group

The government will establish the state-owned Maldives Hajj Corporation Limited following a recommendation by the Cabinet Economic Committee, the President’s Office has confirmed.

President Dr Mohamed Waheed on Thursday (May 16) opted to form the company with 100 percent government shares.

The announcement of the company’s foundation follows recent legal wrangling in the Maldives’ courts over whether the Islamic Ministry should be forced to reevaluate several unsuccessful bids by local Hajj groups wishing to offer pilgrimages.  

The case was filed on the back of concerns at alleged corruption within the current system.

Select Hajj groups are authorised by the government to provide transport and accommodation for pilgrims in Mecca, as well as offering guidance in helping them complete the religious rituals.