NEW DELHI: Muslim pilgrims will no longer be given subsidy for Haj from 2018. Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said that the "Subsidy on Haj is over from this year.
The minister added that 1.75 lakh Muslims, highest ever number, will go on Haj this year. He also said that the removal of the subsidy would not affect the cost of the travel for Haj.
He further added that the money saved will be used for the education of minorities, particularly girls. "Haj subsidy funds will be used for educational empowerment of girls and women of minority community," Naqvi said.
The Ministry of Minority Affairs had in 2017, constituted a committee to review the Haj policy and suggest a framework for a new Haj policy for 2018-22.
Naqvi had then said: "A constitutional bench of the Supreme Court had, during the Congress regime in 2012, directed that the Haj subsidy be done away with. Hence, in the new policy, as per the recommendations of a committee, we have decided to do away with the Haj subsidy gradually."