SRINAGAR — India and Saudi Arabia on Sunday formally signed Hajj Agreement 2024. The pact was signed during Union Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani’s visit to Saudi Arabia. She was accompanied by Minister of State for External Affairs, V Muraleedharan.
In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Irani, as per the news agency KNS, said that she presided over the signing of the agreement and also engaged in productive discussions on matters of mutual interest with Saudi Minister of Haj and Umrah Affairs.
Smriti Irani was also accompanied by Joint Secretary Minority Affairs, Nirupama Kotru, a Kashmiri Pandit.
“Pleased to announce the formalisation of the Bilateral Haj Agreement 2024 between India and Saudi Arabia. I, along with Hon’ble MoS for External Affairs, Shri @MOS_MEA, presided over the signing,” she said.
She said the Saudi delegation expressed sincere appreciation for India’s exceptional digital initiatives, particularly in providing essential last-mile information to pilgrims. “Our proposal to encourage participation of women without Mehram in Haj pilgrimage further underscores our commitment to inclusivity.”
The minister said that discussions also encompassed plans for the enhancement of medical facilities, ensuring the comprehensive well-being of all pilgrims.
“I deeply value the collaborative spirit exhibited during these deliberations and eagerly anticipate the continued fortification of our bilateral relations,” she said.