Umrah to Resume from 1st Muharram, Entry for Pilgrims in Saudi to Resume from 10th August
MAKKAH: The Umrah for people from outside of Saudi Arabia is set to resume from 1st Muharram 1443. Beginning today, Umrah agencies have been authorised to issue Visas for Umrah for entry beginning from 1st Muharram 1443 (10th August 2021).
Umrah pilgrims returned to the Grand Mosque to perform the lesser pilgrimage on Sunday after the successful and safe end of Hajj 2021.
Pilgrims will enter the Grand Mosque through specific gates in order to maintain precautionary measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and ensure social distancing.
Specific locations have also been allocated for performing prayers and pilgrims will follow markings on the floor when performing tawaf as was seen during Hajj and throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
Saudi Deputy Minister of Hajj and Umrah Abdulfattah Al Mashat recently said that Umrah will restart on the 15th of the current Islamic month of Dhu Al Hijjah and related permits can be obtained via the smart Itamarnah app.
“In the beginning, the number of the Umrah pilgrims will be 20,000 [per day]. The number will increase gradually,” he told Saudi-owned television Al Arabiya.
In October, Saudi Arabia set into motion a plan for gradual resumption of the Umrah amid stringent precautions against COVID-19.
The first phase of the plan, which began on October 4, allowed 6,000 Umrah pilgrims from inside the kingdom per day into the Grand Mosque.
The second went into effect on October 18, allowing about 40,000 worshippers and 10,000 pilgrims a day into the site.
As many as 20,000 Umrah pilgrims and 60,000 worshipers per day were allowed into the mosque according to the third phase that started in November.
The month of Ramadan is usually a peak Umrah season.
Last Ramadan, authorities increased the capacity of the Grand Mosque to reach 50,000 Umrah pilgrims and 100,000 worshippers per day.
Only “immunised” people against COVID-19 were allowed to perform the Umrah and visit the Prophet’s Mosque.