Jaya petitions PM on Haj quota

Complaining about "woefully inadequate," allotment of Haj quota to the state, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa today sought the intervention of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to enhance the number.

In a letter to Singh, she said the state Haj Committe had received 12,000 applications this year, but the central Haj Committee had allotted only 2,863 seats which was" woefully inadequate."

As per guidelines for Haj 2012, of these 2,863 seats, 1,146 will be apportioned for various reserved categories and about 1,717 dispensed for selection under the general category, leaving the rest of over 9,000 "disappointed," she said.

During Haj 2011, the Committee had initially allotted 3,049 seats against the receipt of over 10,000 applications from the state and after release of additional quota and government discretionary quota, 4,084 persons were able to perform the pilgrimage. But this year's allocation of 2,863 was an "all time low," she said.

"I therefore, request your kind intervention to enhance the quota taking into account the sizeable Muslim population and the large number of applications received from Tamil Nadu for 2012," she said.

The Ministry of External Affairs may be requested to release a suitable additional number, so that a greater number of pilgrims from Tamil Nadu would be able to perform the Hajj pilgrimage, she added.

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