HAJJ PILGRIMAGE BEGINS
THERE are five groups of TT Muslims geared to travel to the annual sacred Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. The largest group, consisting of 86 people, left last Tuesday with the next group scheduled to leave tomorrow.
The rest will depart on August 20 and 22.
One of the organisers Sheriff Mohammed, said his group would be leaving with 58 pilgrims tomorrow at 1 am, to start their journey to the pilgrimage in Mecca.
Mohammed said they received the group visa’s last Wednesday from the Saudi Arabian diplomats and everything was in place for the group to leave the country.
“I want to say special thanks to the Minister of National Security Edmund Dillon and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ protocol department,” Mohammed said.
“It feels good to know everyone has their documents for the trip. All the pilgrims are looking forward to the trip.” He continued, “They have formed a WhatsApp group to get the feeling of the Hajj and get in the mood of spirituality.” Another organiser, Zabar Baksh, said their group of 60 people would be leaving Trinidad on August 20.
He said despite the challenges to get foreign exchange, which is a big issue in Trinidad and Tobago, everything was ready for their travel. “We eventually got through for those travelling to Saudi Arabia. I personally will not be going on the trip. Since 2012 I got sick and I have not been going but my son and someone will be leading the group.” In a press release yesterday, the Airports Authority of TT said they received a request to film the departure of pilgrims journeying to Mecca for the annual Hajj pilgrimage and the request was approved by the Authority.
The release added that the Airports Authority customarily approves requests for the use of its facilities by various religious and culture groups.