For The First Time Ever, Indian Pilgrims Skip Bus And Take A High-Speed Train From Jeddah Airport To Makkah

Indian pilgrims trade buses for bullet trains.

by Deeplata Garde
For The First Time Ever, Indian Pilgrims Skip Bus And Take A High-Speed Train From Jeddah Airport To Makkah

For the first time in the history of Haj pilgrims, Indians have swapped their traditional bus route for a high-speed train journey from Jeddah Airport to Makkah. This modern travel upgrade, operating at 300 km/h, significantly enhances the pilgrimage experience for Indian travellers. Indian Ambassador in Jeddah, Dr. Suhel Khan, and Consul General Mohd Shahid joined the pilgrims on this landmark journey.

A New Era Of Pilgrimage Travel For Indians

“History is being made!” the Indian Embassy in Riyadh announced on X (formerly Twitter). The Embassy shared the excitement of Indian pilgrims using a high-speed train directly from Jeddah Airport to Makkah for the first time. On May 26, Ambassador Dr. Suhel Khan and Consul General Mohd Shahid accompanied the inaugural group of pilgrims. This fast-paced train journey marks a significant milestone, promising to make travel more comfortable and efficient.

The Embassy also noted that approximately 32,000 Indian Hajis would benefit from this exclusive service this year. The introduction of this high-speed train not only reduces travel time but also ensures a smoother and more pleasant journey for the pilgrims. The Embassy emphasized the coordination with Saudi authorities to make this initiative a success.

Pilgrimage Made Smoother and Faster

The Indian Embassy highlighted the significant improvement in travel time and comfort for the pilgrims. About 32,000 Indian Hajis will use this exclusive service this year, which will also reduce the journey time between Jeddah and Makkah, as per the embassy. Successful coordination with Saudi authorities played a crucial role in implementing this innovative travel solution.

This year, India has a quota of 175,025 pilgrims for Haj, as finalised in the Bilateral Haj Agreement 2024 signed in January. Union Minister for Women and Child Development and Minority Affairs Smriti Irani, along with Minister of State for External Affairs and Parliamentary Affairs V Muraleedharan, signed this agreement with Dr Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al-Rabiah, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Hajj and Umrah. Every year, millions of Muslims undertake this sacred pilgrimage, which certainly holds profound spiritual significance.

The desire to participate in the Haj rituals, walk to Mina, and echo the Labaik with fellow pilgrims is a deeply cherished sentiment for many believers. This year, their journey is set to be faster and more comfortable thanks to the high-speed train service.

In March, Union Minority Affairs Minister Smriti Irani also launched the Haj Suvidha Mobile Application and released the Haj Guide 2024 in New Delhi. The Minister also praised the coordinated efforts of various ministries in the NDA government to ensure a smooth and convenient Haj pilgrimage for Indian citizens.

Also Read: Mumbai International Airport Expects 33,000 Haj Pilgrims To Fly To Saudi Arabia From Mumbai In 2 Months

A New Chapter in Haj Pilgrimage

The introduction of the high-speed train from Jeddah Airport to Makkah marks a new chapter in the Haj pilgrimage. Indian pilgrims can now look forward to a quicker, more comfortable journey. This modern travel solution showcases the commitment to enhancing the pilgrimage experience while preserving the spiritual essence of this sacred journey.

Cover Image Courtesy: IndianembassyinSaudiArabia/X

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