MP: Pilgrims to file case against Haj committee, Air India

  • Shahroz Afridi, Hindustan Times, Bhopal
  • Updated: Nov 08, 2014 16:32 IST

Stung by lack of facilities, Haj pilgrims who have returned from Saudi Arabia have decided to file a case against MP State Haj Committee, Central Haj Committee and service provider Air India.

Pilgrims from Bhopal and around were taken to Saudi Arabia in five flights from the state capital. According to schedule received from the State Haj Committee, Haj pilgrims were to return from October 29 till November 2, with one flight every day. Instead, the flights that returned were rescheduled and the first flight came on October 29. The next flight arrived on November 2 and then two flights on November 5.

Out of these, only two flights from Saudi Arabia landed at Bhopal while the other four delayed flights landed at Ahmedabad airport where about 500 pilgrims remained stranded for about 24 hours without food and basic amenities. "Most of the pilgrims were lying on the floors of the airport with no authority to listen to our plight," said Haji Sharif, who remained stranded at Ahmedabad airport.

Irate Haj pilgrims have now decided to file a case against State Haj Committee, Central Haj Committee and Air India. One of the pilgrims requesting anonymity said he had met several like-minded Hajis and would file a case after consulting legal expert.

"We pay for every service we avail. Depriving us of any service promised is breach of contract and they should be penalized for it," said an irate Haji.

On the other hand, State Haj Committee has put the blame on Central Haj Committee and Air India. CEO of State Haj Committee, Dawood Khan, accepted that Air India failed miserably to cater to the needs of the Haj pilgrims. Chairman of state Haj Committee Inayat Ali assured to take the case with union government.

The Haj pilgrims are divided in two groups: green category has to pay about Rs 1.85 lakh while aziziya category is availed for Rs 1.55 lakh.

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