Hajj 2024 death toll crosses 1300; 100 Indians among the deceased | Top updates | World News - Hindustan Times
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Hajj 2024 death toll crosses 1300; 100 Indians among the deceased | Top updates

Jun 24, 2024 08:33 AM IST

The extreme heatwave in Saudi Arabia led to over 1,300 hajj pilgrims dying due to weather-related issues.

As Asian countries reel under heatwaves, the death toll from this year's hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia crossed 1,300.

Muslim pilgrims use umbrellas to shade themselves from the sun as they arrive at the base of Mount Arafat, also known as Jabal al-Rahma or Mount of Mercy, during the annual hajj pilgrimage on June 15, 2024.(AFP)
Muslim pilgrims use umbrellas to shade themselves from the sun as they arrive at the base of Mount Arafat, also known as Jabal al-Rahma or Mount of Mercy, during the annual hajj pilgrimage on June 15, 2024.(AFP)

Saudi authorities announced on Sunday that a total of 1,301 pilgrims have died during the hajj pilgrimage 2024, as devotees ended up facing extremely high temperatures this year.

Saudi health minister Fahd bin Abdurrahman Al-Jalajel said that 83% of the 1,301 fatalities were unauthorized pilgrims who walked long distances in soaring temperatures to perform the Hajj rituals in and around the holy city of Mecca.

Authorities said that the identification process for many of the deceased pilgrims was slowed down as they were not carrying the proper documents with them. Some of the dead have been buried in Mecca, officials said.

Hajj pilgrimage tragedy top updates

  1. The death toll from the hajj pilgrimage this year crossed 1,300 on Sunday, said Saudi authorities. Most of the pilgrims were unauthorized, causing a major delay in the identification process of the deceased.
  2. The fatalities included more than 660 Egyptians. All but 31 of them were unauthorized pilgrims, according to officials in Cairo.
  3. The statement by Saudi Arabia noted that 83 per cent of those who died were "unauthorized to perform Hajj" and "walked long distances under direct sunlight, without adequate shelter or comfort." Majority of the dead were old and chronically ill, said the authorities.
  4. India's external affairs ministry on Friday said that out of the total deceased, 98 are Indians. MEA spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said in a press conference, “This year, 175,000 Indian pilgrims have visited Hajj so far…We have 98 Indian pilgrims who have died in Hajj…”
  5. Extreme heat has been named as the main reason behind hundreds of deaths and injuries reported during this year's Hajj pilgrimage. The temperature in Mecca rose to a record-setting 125 degrees Fahrenheit on Monday.
  6. The death toll was enhanced due to the large number of unauthorised pilgrims this year, who didn't have access to proper amenities and air conditioned areas, being more susceptible to heat.
  7. The temperature in Saudi Arabia reached 125 degrees Fahrenheit (52 degrees Celsius) this year, with the majority of the unauthorized hajj pilgrims travelling via foot through the deserts.
  8. Hajj permits are given to nations based on a quota system, but each of these permits cost thousands of dollars. This is why many pilgrims choose to attempt the pilgrimage illegally, which prevents them from accessing infrastructure and transportation facilities.

(With inputs from ANI)

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