Faizel Patel
Senior Digital Journalist
3 minute read
10 Jul 2022
10:14 am

Eid Mubarak: One million pilgrims complete successful Hajj in Saudi Arabia

Faizel Patel

King Salman lauded the smooth and easy return of pilgrimage following exceptional health conditions due to Covid-19.

Picture: Faizel Patel

As the annual Hajj in Saudi Arabia draws to a close, pilgrims moved to the Haram in Makkah for Tawaf Al-Ifadha, celebrating Eid Al-Adha and Tawaf-e-Wida’a, the farewell circumambulation of the holy Ka’ba before departing the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for their home countries.

On Saturday, pilgrims cast stones they picked up in Muzdalifah after spending the night under the stars at the Jamarat or stoning of the devil, sacrificed animals, and had their heads shaved for the 10th day of Dul Hijjah, which marks Eid-Al-Adha. 

The pilgrims threw seven pebbles at the biggest pillar Jamarah Al-Kubra symbolizing the devil’s stoning by the Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him).

The next two days, Sunday and Monday, they’ll also cast pebbles at the  pillars of Al-Jamarah Al-Sughra and Al-Jamarah Al-Wusta.

Afterwards, pilgrims return to their accommodation to shave their heads, as a mark of rebirth.

Pilgrims’ prayers are also accepted by Allah for a period of three months after Hajj while he or she returns to their homes like a newborn baby, free of sin.

ALSO SEE: Saudi Arabia’s Hajj and Umrah Ministry sacks CEO for lack of service to pilgrims

Zain Gani who has been very generous and assisting those in his group says it has been a fulfilling Hajj.

Basheer Vally, Nazeer Ebrahim, Haroon Pandor, Yunus Osman including the wives of the South African pilgrims, are among many others who opened their hearts to assist those in need in whatever way they could to make the journey of a lifetime, or journey of spiritual ecstasy even more memorable.

About 850,000 pilgrims from abroad including 1,132 South Africans performed Hajj this year.

150,000 locals also performed Hajj, bringing the total number of pilgrims to one million.

Meanwhile, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman greeted citizens, residents, pilgrims and Muslims of the world on Eid Al-Adha.

King Salman lauded the smooth and easy return of pilgrimage following exceptional health conditions due to Covid-19.

“I thank Allah Almighty for the great success of the Kingdom’s efforts in reducing the effects imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic on all aspects of life, which enabled pilgrims to perform rituals in a healthy and safe environment.”

King Salman also praised the thousands of workers for serving the Two Holy Mosques by caring for the kingdoms guests during Hajj.

“Due to the great success achieved by Saudi Arabia in addressing the coronavirus pandemic, we raised the number of pilgrims for this year’s Hajj season to one million from inside and outside the Kingdom, while taking precautionary measures in order to ensure the safety of pilgrims and to take care of their health.”

South African Muslims will be celebrating Eid-Al-Adha on Sunday.

ALSO SEE: Eid al-Adha: Three delicious sweet desserts to enjoy during the festivities

The celebration of Eid-Al-Adha is to commemorate Prophet Ibrahim’s devotion to Allah and his readiness to sacrifice his son, Ismail.

At the very point of sacrifice, Allah replaced Ismail with a ram, which was to be slaughtered in place of his son.

This command from Allah was a test of Prophet Ibrahim’s willingness and commitment to obey his Lord’s command, without question.