KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) issued a notice to the religious affairs ministry on Wednesday for alleged discriminatory registration of private Hajj tour-operator agencies for quota allocation.
The two-member SHC division bench also issued a notice to the Sindh deputy attorney-general to file comments at the next hearing date.
The petitioner, Aurangzeb Orakzai, the director of M/s Malik Travel Agency, submitted that his agency was offering Hajj and Umrah packages to pilgrims under the government’s Private Hajj Organisation Scheme. He stated that his travel agency was denied enrolment for a Hajj quota in 2009.
Earlier, the Supreme Court, while hearing the petition filed by Hajj tour-operator agencies, directed the religious affairs ministry to consider applications of private tour operators for registration. But, the ministry considered cases of only those agencies that filed a petition in the apex court, the petitioner submitted.
He also stated that he applied for registration, but the ministry authorities turned it down, which, according to him, is discrimination and a defiance of the apex court’s orders. He appealed to the court to direct the religious affairs ministry to consider his application for Hajj quota registration. PPI
Published in The Express Tribune, July 29th, 2010.
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