Prime minister Sheikh Hasina Friday inaugurated the Hajj Programme-2023 (1444 Hijri) at the hajji office in the capital's Ashkona area.
Opening the hajj programme, the prime minister sought doa from the pilgrims for the people of Bangladesh so that none could play ducks and drakes with the fate of people of the country.
The first hajj flight is scheduled to depart from Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport for Saudi Arabia at 2:45 am on Saturday.
This year, a total of 122,221 pilgrims from Bangladesh are going to perform the holy hajj. The number of hajj pilgrims from Bangladesh was 57,585 last year due to Covid-19 restriction.
Before the Covid-19 pandemic, 127,198 pilgrims from Bangladesh performed hajj in 2019. The Hajj is expected to be held on 27 June depending on the sighting of the moon.
State minister for religious affairs Md Faridul Haque Khan, MP, presided over the function while secretary of the ministry Kazi Enamul Hassan delivered welcome address.
State minister for Civil Aviation and Tourism M Mahbub Ali, Habib Hasan, MP, Saudi ambassador to Bangladesh Essa Yussef Essa Al Dulaihan and president of Hajj Agencies Association of Bangladesh (HAAB) Shahadat Hossain Taslim also spoke on the occasion.
At the outset of the ceremony, a video documentary on hajj management was screened.