No balloting for Haj will be conducted this year as the number of applications received for Haj was far less than the seats available.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Thursday announced that all Haj applications under the government scheme would be accepted without balloting.
In a brief address at the state-run electronic media along with Minister for Religious Affairs Mufti Abdul Shakoor, Mr Dar said as many as 72,869 applications had been received under the government’s regular scheme against a quota of 44,190.
The finance ministry planned to accept all applications of intending pilgrims, he said, adding that the extra foreign exchange reserves for Haj pilgrims would be provided with the support of the State Bank of Pakistan.
He asked the intending pilgrims to pray for the progress and prosperity of the country.
As per the Haj quota distribution, the government had allocated around 45,000 seats under the sponsorship scheme.
Under this scheme, the applicants were to pay Haj dues in dollars, but only around 6,000 applications were received by the government under this scheme and around 10,000 seats remained vacant due to limited interest shown by the people.