Hajj flight begins Thursday

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Dhaka, July 03: Hajj flight carrying Bangladeshi pilgrims to perform the holy hajj in Saudi Arabia this year begins from Thursday.A flight of Biman Bangladesh airlines carrying the first batch of Bangladeshi pilgrims will leave Dhaka for Saudi Arabia on Thursday morning.

Biman Bangladesh airlines officials said, the first hajj flight (BG-3001) will depart from Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport with 419 pilgrims on its board at 7:15am.

State Minister for Civil Aviation and Tourism Md. Mahbub Ali and State Minister for Religious affairs Advocate Sheikh Md. Abdullah are expected to be present at the airport to see off the pilgrims, they said. Some 1,27,198 pilgrims from Bangladesh are set to perform hajj this year.

Biman will carry 63,599 passengers, which is about half of the number of total hajj pilgrims.

The remaining pilgrims will be flown by Saudi Airlines, the national carrier of Saudi Arabia which will start its hajj flight on July 6.

This year for the first time, the immigration formalities of some Bangladeshi pilgrims will be completed in Dhaka.

Biman is going to operate 189 pre-hajj flights, 157 dedicated and 32 scheduled flights from tomorrow to August 5, by its own four ‘Boeing 777-300ER’.

The airlines will operate 11 flights to Madina from Dhaka for the first time this year. Apart from Dhaka, 19 hajj flights will be operated from Chattogram while three from Sylhet.

Biman will operate 176 post-hajj flights, 147 dedicated and 29 scheduled flights from August 17 to September 15.

So far Biman carried 10, 60,444 pilgrims to Saudi Arabia to perform the holy hajj since 1973, said an official press release issued earlier here.