Haj 2024: 8 arrested, fined 280,000 riyals for transporting illegal pilgrims in Saudi

Penalties for violating pilgrimage instructions are being implemented starting June 2, and will last until June 20


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Published: Fri 7 Jun 2024, 1:42 PM

Last updated: Fri 7 Jun 2024, 10:55 PM

Eight people were arrested in Saudi Arabia for transporting 28 pilgrims without valid Haj permits, authorities said on Friday.

The suspects — three expats and five citizens — were ordered to pay a fine of 10,000 Saudi riyals (roughly Dh9,700) for every illegal pilgrim they transported. This amounts to a total of 280,000 Saudi riyals (about Dh274,210).

They will also be jailed for 15 days and their vehicles confiscated, the kingdom's Ministry of Interior said in a social media post on X.

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The expats who transported the pilgrims will be deported to their home countries and barred from re-entering Saudi for a specific period, according to the law.

Meanwhile, in a separate social media post, the authorities mentioned that four people, two residents and two citizens, were arrested for promoting forged Hajj permits and visas on social media sites.

The violators were found in possession of SIM cards, stamps, mobile phones, computers and sums of money.

Penalties for violating Haj regulations and instructions in Saudi Arabia are being implemented starting June 2, and will last until June 20.

According to the new Haj rules being implemented, anyone caught transporting Haj pilgrims without a permit will be imprisoned to up to 6 months, and will be fined for up to 50,000 Saudi Riyal or Dh49,000.

Meanwhile, the authorities will impose a fine of 10,000 Saudi Riyal, roughly around Dh9,000 on citizens, residents, and visitors performing Haj without a permit.

The authorities urged all citizens and residents to strictly adhere to Haj regulations, in order to ensure a safe, secure, and comfortable pilgrimage.

Haj rituals

Additionally, the authorities have clarified that anyone that has a visit visa, regardless of their type or designation, are not allowed to perform Haj. All visitors are advised to avoid travelling to or staying in Makkah between the June 2 and June 21.

The authorities reported that over 20,000 visitors with visit visas have been found in violation of Hajj regulations, which prohibit them from staying in Makkah.

Similary, operators in the UAE cannot receive applications or requests for Haj or Umrah without prior approval from the General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments.


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