In years earlier than the coronavirus, tens of millions of pilgrims from throughout the globe would flock to Islam’s holiest web site to attend hajj, one of many world’s greatest non secular gatherings. Nevertheless, with a virus-induced ban on giant gatherings in place, only some thousand folks attended the rituals of this 12 months’s scaled-down hajj pilgrimage.
Hanging photos confirmed a number of ft separated white-clad worshippers circumambulating the Kaaba, the holiest shrine within the grand mosque within the holy Saudi metropolis of Mecca. Presenting a pointy distinction to the earlier years’ huge crowds crammed across the shrine, this 12 months’s hajj images confirmed mask-wearing pilgrims strolling at a measured tempo, holding umbrellas to defend themselves from Saudi Arabia’s blistering solar.
Solely as much as 10,000 folks already residing within the kingdom are collaborating on this 12 months’s pilgrimage, in contrast with 2019’s gathering of some 2.5 million from all over the world, reported information company AFP.
“Holding the ritual within the shadow of this pandemic… required lowering the numbers of pilgrims, but it surely obliged varied official businesses to place in double efforts,” 84-year-old King Salman mentioned in a speech learn out on state tv by appearing media minister Majid Al-Qasabi.
In contrast to previous years after they lunged in direction of the Kaaba, this 12 months, pilgrims weren’t allowed to the touch the plain stone dice constructing lined in black material and wrapped in Arabic writing in golden silk.
The hajj, which started on Wednesday, is without doubt one of the 5 pillars of Islam and a should for able-bodied Muslims at the very least as soon as of their lifetime.