HC directs Haj Committee to consider TN's request to declare Chennai as embarkation point
In a slight relief to Haj pilgrims of Tamil Nadu, the Madras High Court on Friday wanted the Union government and Haj Committee of India to consider Chief Minister MK Stalin's request to announce Chennai as one of the Haj embarkation stations.
The first division bench of Madras High Court, consisting of Chief Justice Munishwar Nath Bhandari and Justice D Bharatha Chakravarthy passed the direction on disposing of a petition filed by the Tamil Nadu unit of Popular Front of India represented by its general secretary Abdul Kader.
The petitioner sought direction from the court to quash impugned guidelines released by the Haj Committee of India for Haj 2022 and restore or add Chennai airport as one of the Haj embarkation points.
"The Haj Committee announced 21 embarkation points, including Chennai for 2019. However, for the year 2022, only 10 embarkation point has been announced through the impugned notification and the committee has excluded Chennai. It has made Cochin the embarkation point for Tamil Nadu Haj pilgrims. It is arbitrary and unreasonable," the petitioner submitted.
The petitioner informed the HC that the Hajj Committee had allotted 3534 quotas for TN for the Haj pilgrimage.
Responding to these submissions, the Union government submitted that the Centre had received a representation from the State government to make Chennai airport one of the embarkation points.
"The request of the state is under our consideration," the Centre submitted.
In recording the submission, CJ MN Bhandari directed the Haj Committee of India to consider the government's representation to earmark Chennai as one of the Haj embarkation stations.