Pilgrims warned against going to Arafat without Haj permits
Domestic pilgrims planning to go straight to Arafat on Monday, Dul Hijjah 9, have been warned against doing so if they have no Haj permits, as checking will be conducted at holy sites also.
Saad Al-Qurashi, a member of the Haj and Umrah Committee at Makkah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, told Arab News that many domestic pilgrims think that the checkpoints would be removed after noon on the ninth day of Dul Hijjah and that they can head to Arafat.
“Some domestic pilgrims prefer to head to Arafat and stop there for an hour at least before sunset and move to Muzdalifah with all the pilgrims in the evening,” he said.
“Yes, Haj is Arafah. Stopping for an hour over there is enough. But the checking of Haj permits is not only at checkpoints, but pilgrims sleeping on roads at the holy sites will also be checked,” said Al-Qurashi.
Omar Abdul Atti, an Egyptian expatriate, told Arab News that he was planning to head directly to Arafat, but changed his mind because of the strict checking at the holy sites.
“In the past, it was easy to go for Haj and come back without permit. However, the situation has changed now. If there are no checkpoints on the roads, it means the fingerprint devices will be waiting for pilgrims without permits in the holy sites,” he said.