Religious Minister proposes improvement in hajj facilities to Saudi government

Religious Minister proposes improvement in hajj facilities to Saudi government

Illustration. Pilgrims perform Tawaf in the Grand Mosque in the Holy City of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra)

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesian Minister of Religion, Lukman Hakim Saifuddin, is currently in Saudi Arabia to discuss the importance of improving Hajj facilities in Arafat and Mina areas.

"Indonesia will again propose the importance of improving facilities and infrastructures in Arafat and Mina areas," Saifuddin noted in a statement received by ANTARA here on Monday.

He stated that Arafat and Mina have always had crucial issues in organizing the Hajj. Although improvements continue to be made, a breakthrough is still needed, so that pilgrims can be more comfortable and experience solemn while conducting worships.

Moreover, the two areas are places for core of the Hajj rituals.

"The tents in Arafat are expected to remain cool, considering that next year`s Hajj season would coincide with the peak of summer," he explained.

Meanwhile, the main issue regarding the Hajj facilities in Mina is the availability of tents and toilets.

Saifuddin stated that the Indonesian government has expressed hope that the Saudi government could take steps related to this issue by preparing multilevel tents and adding more toilets.

The Indonesian Ministry of Religion plans to implement a zoning system to regulate pilgrim`s accommodation. The Indonesian Hajj pilgrims will be placed in hotels according to their original cities, districts, or provinces. This is expected to enhance comfort and make the catering menu service easy.

"Every year, there are always around six to seven Indonesian pilgrimage shelters in Mina Jadid. This year, we plan to place them in the closest area in Jamarat, namely Syisah and Aziziah, so that they can return to their hotels after staying overnight in Mina," Saifuddin pointed out.

Reporting by Anom Prihantoro
Editing by Libertina, Rahmad Nasution