Hajj quotas: SC sets aside LHC verdict as ‘involvement in policy matters’

High Court had ordered allocation of Hajj quotas to new organisers.

Our Correspondent July 30, 2013
The organisers spent millions of rupees on transportation and accommodation for pilgrims but the LHC had deprived them of their quotas, says the petitioner. PHOTO: AFP


A two-member bench of the Supreme Court on Tuesday set aside the Lahore High Court decision to grant Hajj quotas to new group organisers.

The bench headed by Justice Tasadduq Hussain Jilani said the LHC’s decision was “court involvement in policy matters.”

The bench issued the order on a petition filed by several old Hajj group organisers.

The petitioners’ counsel had submitted that the LHC did not have the jurisdiction to grant Hajj quotas to new HGOs. He said it was a policy matter and the courts were not authorised to intervene.

The petitioner said the organisers had spent millions of rupees on transportation and accommodation for pilgrims but the LHC had deprived them of their quotas.

He said they would lose millions of rupees if they were not awarded quotas.

Meanwhile, the new HGOs counsel submitted that the LHC’s decision was for the welfare of the general public. He said the court had given the quota to operators offering the best rates.

He said the old HGOs, in connivance with Ministry of Religious Affairs, were overcharging.

LHC Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial had directed the Ministry of Religious Affairs to allot quotas to those Hajj group organisers charging between Rs190,000 and Rs247,000 per pilgrim. The CJ had ordered the ministry to divide 910 pilgrims among 18 operators.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 31st, 2013. 


Usman Masood | 9 years ago | Reply

This is just disgusting. These Hajj organizers don't pay taxes, they only set up shop for a month. Meanwhile, travel agents that are open all year long, who do pay taxes, and who are offering a cheaper solution get sidetracked every year.

Most of the people who get Quotas simply sell them of to other travel agents. They are not even interested in actually doing the required work!!!

It should be mandatory for these people to open a shop 24/7. Have actual 10 years or more experience in sending people to Umrah. And be affiliated with IATA! Only in Pakistan does something like Hajj mean huge profits.

In India Hajj is way cheaper. People have managed to setup sites that people from all over the world can book their Hajj packages online. But only Pakistan is left out, from all the Muslim countries, Only Pakistan is insistent on stifling the competition within Hajj organizers which breeds extremely bad results.

These Hajj organizers do not care about quality of service. They give you a worthless package, and you can;t do anything about it. Because they have a quote. Job well done Pakistan.

Jalal | 9 years ago | Reply

They allot quotas to those Hajj group organizers who fill their pockets well enough back in Ministries. Otherwise there is no such group exists who offer you a Hajj pilgrim less than 4 Lakhs.

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