New Age Islam
Mon Oct 19 2020, 02:25 PM

Current Affairs ( 13 May 2012, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Taking Any Subsidy For Haj Is Against The Teachings Of Islam


By Muhammad Sultan Sayyed

The Government of India in its affidavit filed before the Supreme Court of India had stated in para 21 that: “The Ministry of Civil Aviation floats a tender to select an airline to get a competitive fare to ferry the Haj pilgrims. For the year 2010, the fare per pilgrim was Rs.47,675/- and in 2011 was Rs.54,800/-. The higher fares charged by the Airlines during the Haj period vis-à-vis other times of the year is due to regulations imposed by the Saudi Arabian Authorities during the Haj period. The norm is that the Airline should carry pilgrims to Jeddah and return with zero load and vice versa. This forces the Airlines to increase the fares, which otherwise come to around Rs.25,000/. Therefore, the Government thought it fit to collect a reasonable fare from the pilgrim and the additional fare charged because of the Haj specific logistics is paid by the Government to the airline.”

Below is the chart showing the capacities of the aircrafts. The maximum capacity is created by adding more seats by abolishing the classes in the aircrafts. Generally it is done for charter flights as in the case of Haj season.

It is worthwhile to note that the average Passenger Load Factor of the airlines never crossed 65% of its normal capacity including the Haj season load carried by them. If Haj season load is deducted then the Passenger Load Factor dips further.


Passenger Capacity

Fare collection per flight



PLF* 65% of

Normal capacity

Normal fare INR 25000 x PLF

Haj Fare 16000 x Max capacity

Air Bus A-318




1.75 m

2.72 m

Air Bus A-319




2.025 m

3.20 m

Air Bus A-320




2.45 m

3.60 m

Air Bus A-321




3.00 m

4.48 m

Air Bus A-330-200




4.10 m

6.08 m

Air Bus A-330-300




4.80 m

7.04 m

Air Bus A-380




6.625 m

13.44 m

Boeing 767-200




2.95 m

4.64 m

Boeing 767-300




3.55 m

5.60 m

Boeing 767-400




3.975 m

6.00 m


*PLF Passenger Load Factor

In 2011 Haj season about 125,000 Indian pilgrims flew through the Haj Committee of India which arranged 439 flights.

The average load factor per flight comes to 285 whereas in normal times it is about 120 passengers. This extra load factor is achieved by adding more seats in the same flight.

Haj Committee charged INR 16000 per pilgrim.

Therefore the collected total fare comes to INR 200 millions

These 125,000 Indian pilgrims were accommodated in 439 flights

Therefore yield per flight INR 4.555808 million.

 The hitch lies in fixing the fare INR 54800 per pilgrim which more than the double the normal fare. The affidavit tries to justify the higher fare on the assumption that the airline has to carry two flights with zero load factor.

I am not an expert on the calculations of the consumption of fuel. However my study revealed that fuel consumption increases with load factor.

The fare INR 25000 when calculated twice with PLF 65% of normal capacity with proportional reduction of savings in fuel charges when aircraft flew with zero load is approximately equal to the fare INR 16000 collected from Indian pilgrims who are carried in aircrafts with maximum capacity.

Therefore the contention of Government of India that it gives INR 38000 as subsidy per pilgrim to the airlines is an exercise of the Indian bureaucracy to fool Indians. The worst part lies when Indian Muslim leaders protest against the phasing out of the so called subsidy.

It would be worthwhile to note that Air India the national carrier of India survived all these years on the monies earned by it through fares collected from pilgrims and the amounts received by it in the name of so called subsidy.

The Indian Government and the Muslim leaders in India are fooling Indian Muslims stating that Government of India gives subsidy to Indian Haj Pilgrims going through Haj Committee.

The Indian bureaucracy are hitting two birds at a time: Fooling Indian Muslims that government gives subsidy to them in Haj Pilgrim while at the same time giving a tool to Non-Muslim Indians that Government is appeasing Indian Muslims so that they do not demand other legitimate rights.

A lot is murmured over the recent judgement of the Supreme Court India directing Government of India to phase out the subsidy in next ten years.

Indian Muslims should welcome the judgement and should demand that phasing out of the subsidy should be done in a year rather than a decade as directed by the Indian Supreme Court by bringing total transparency in the working of Haj Committee of India.

Some of the Muslims from India feel about a viable alternative would be to focus on lobbying government to divert the Hajj subsidy money for specific projects aimed at the upliftment and betterment of Muslims. This is much easier for the government to do and more beneficial for the Muslim masses.

This notion is based on the assumption of existence of subsidy. As I have detailed hereinbefore there is no subsidy but only fooling the Muslims.

Few think that cancelling the whole subsidy would amount taking away a benefit from the community which it has been enjoying for last several years. It is notable that other religious congregations like Amarnath Yatris too get subsidy from state and central governments. Why not the SC go for a solution rather than ordering the Govt to cancel it altogether?

This thinking is also wrong. Leave Amarnath issue all together. Rather we should now built up a strong case that all these years the Indian bureaucracy cheated Indian Muslims.

Someone from Mumbai India even dared to declare that taking subsidy is not Haram. May Allah Sub'hanhu wa Ta'aalaa save Indian Muslims from such a thinking. Haj is compulsory for those who can afford it and that too once in a life time. In my opinion thought of taking any subsidy for Haj itself is against the teaching of Islam.

Existence of Haj Committee of India cannot be dispensed with. The need of the hour is that it is made to be managed with full transparency.

All mistakes /errors are from me.

May ALLAH Sub’hanhu wa Ta’aalaa guide us. Aameen.