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Religious minister assures NA to bring down Hajj expenses from Rs 650,000

"A comprehensive and affordable package for Umrah and Ziaraat would soon be introduced"

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Religious minister assures NA to bring down Hajj expenses from Rs 650,000
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Islamabad: Minister for Religious Affairs Mufti Abdul Shakoor here on Friday assured the National Assembly that the government was negotiating with the quarters concerned to further bring down the expenses of Hajj-2022 below Rs. 6,50,000.

In a policy statement in the House, he said, “I am still negotiating with the Saudi government and other quarters concerned to further reduce the expenses of upcoming Hajj from 650,000 aimed at extending maximum facilities to intending pilgrims in performing the religious obligation.”

He said the Ministry of Religious Affairs had hired the residential buildings in Makkah at the rate of 2100 Saudi Riyal against the rate of 3600 Riyal paid in 2019 by the previous government of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

He said his ministry had hired buildings in Madina-tul-Munawara at 720 Riyal against the rate of 2100 Riyal paid in 2019. He said Saudi Arabia had fixed 9500 Riyal expense for each intending pilgrim of D-Category against 5500 Riyal.” Had there the PTI government, the expense of Hajj would have been Rs 1100,000 per pilgrim,” he added.

“Under the leadership of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman, the expense of the upcoming Hajj had been brought down to Rs 65,000 and efforts were underway to further reduce it,” he said.

He said expense of the food and transport had also been reduced by the government of Saudi Arabia on the request of Pakistan. The minister said soon after assuming the charge, he was shocked to see when his ministry briefed him about the exorbitant expense of Hajj.

“I made it clear that I will prefer to resign and leave the government rather announcing the expensive hajj.” Mufti Abdul Shakoor said his leader Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman had also directed him to reduce the expense of the hajj.

He also assured that the corruption committed in his Ministry by the previous government would be dug out and shared with the House.

The minister said a comprehensive and affordable package for Umrah and Ziaraat would soon be introduced.

He vowed that an affordable package for the minorities would also be introduced soon to facilitate them in visiting their sacred and religious places.

Business

NA passes Finance Bill 2022

The NA passed the Finance Bill 2022, giving legal effect to budgetary proposals for the next fiscal year.

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NA passes Finance Bill 2022

Islamabad: The National Assembly (NA) on Wednesday passed the Finance Bill 2022, giving legal effect to budgetary proposals for the next fiscal year.

It was moved by Minister of State for Finance Aisha Ghaus Pasha.

Having a total outlay of 9502 billion rupees, the budget 2022-23 encompasses measures for sustainable economic growth, industrial and agriculture development and relief for the poor people.

The budget envisages Federal Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) OF 800 billion rupees for the next fiscal year. It has been centered on improvement in sectors such as water resources, transport and communication, energy, higher education, health, science and technology, and balanced regional development.

699 billion rupees have been set aside for targeted subsidies to extend benefit to deprived segments of the society.

The budget of Benazir Income Support Program has been increased to 364 billion rupees.  In addition, 12 billion rupees have been allocated for the provision of subsidy on essential commodities through Utility Stores Corporation.

The salaries of government employees have been increased by fifteen percent along with a merger of adhoc allowances.

As regards taxation, the government has levied super tax on affluent class in order to reduce the budget deficit and take the country towards economic sovereignty.

Taking the floor, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) has always led the struggle for democracy, free and fair elections and  the economic rights of the people. He said his party strongly believes in transparent elections.

He said the PPP will also secure victory in the second phase of Sindh local government elections to be held in a month's time.

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Pakistan

Eidul Adha on July 10 as Zil Hajj moon not sighted in Pakistan

Central Ruet-e-Hilal Committee Chairman Maulana Syed Abdul Khabir Azad announced the decision following a meeting of the committee

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Eidul Adha on July 10 as Zil Hajj moon not sighted in Pakistan

The Central Ruet-e-Hilal Committee announced Wednesday that the Zil-Hajj moon has not been sighted in Pakistan, adding that Eid ul Adha in Pakistan will be observed on July 10 (Sunday).

Chairman Maulana Syed Abdul Khabir Azad announced the decision following a meeting of the committee, held in Karachi after Maghrib prayers to sight the crescent moon.

The first day of Zil hajj would fall on July 1 (Friday), he added.

In the meeting, it was formally announced by the committee that the moon of Zul-Hijjah has not been seen anywhere in the country, therefore Eid-ul-Adha will be on Sunday, July 10.

Earlier, the Lahore Zonal Committee had also announced that the moon of Dhi Al-Hajj has not been seen. Eid-ul-Adha will be on Sunday, July 10, however, the final announcement in this regard was to be made by the Central Route Hilal Committee.

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Sports

US Open champion Raducanu faces exit from Wimbledon

Emma Raducanu has struggled with a string of minor injuries since her sensational win at Flushing Meadows last year.

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US Open champion Raducanu faces exit from Wimbledon

US Open champion Emma Raducanu crashed out of Wimbledon on Wednesday, losing her second-round match against Caroline Garcia 6-3, 6-3 to the disappointment of the British home crowd.

The 10th seed, who was troubled by a side strain in the run-up to the Grand Slam, was broken five times in the match on Centre Court by her French opponent, ranked 55 in the world.

Raducanu, 19, was on the back foot early in the contest after being broken in her first service game and won just 45 percent of points on her first serve.

Garcia, fresh from winning on grass at Bad Homberg, hit 25 winners in an impressive display.

"Emma is a huge player and in her home tournament and she proved she can do very well on the big stage," said Garcia.

"I really enjoyed playing on Centre Court, it was my first time and very special."

Raducanu has struggled with a string of minor injuries since her sensational win at Flushing Meadows last year.

She has also come under scrutiny over her failure to settle on a long-term coach.

SOURCE: AFP

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