MECCA, May 19 — Malaysia has once again made significant strides in Haj management by becoming one of the first countries to distribute the Nusuk Haj Card, an official identification card for the 1445H/2024 season, starting yesterday.

Malaysian Haj Delegation head Datuk Seri Syed Saleh Syed Abdul Rahman, said the card available in both digital and physical formats, is an innovative measure by the Saudi Ministry of Haj and Umrah and it includes comprehensive personal data, accommodation details, visa information and passport data for the pilgrims.

The card helps Saudi authorities in easily identifying pilgrims, improving security and streamlining pilgrim movement during their time in the Holy Land.

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Syed Saleh emphasised that this initiative reflects Malaysia’s commitment and the close cooperation between the Pilgrims Fund Board (TH), Masyariq and the Saudi Ministry of Haj and Umrah.

“Malaysian pilgrims are advised to carry their Nusuk Haj Card at all times and to take good care of it, as it is a requirement set by the Saudi authorities for this Haj season,” he said after presenting the card to the first group of 20 pilgrims at the TH Hotel Abraj Al Janadriyah Headquarters yesterday.

The event was attended by Masyariq representatives, who provide facilities and services to Malaysian pilgrims.

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Syed Saleh stressed the importance of carrying the ID card at all times while in Mecca and Madinah, as it doubles as a permit for movement in Arafah, Muzdalifah and Mina during Haj.

“I urge all pilgrims to safeguard the ID card provided by TH earlier and the Haj Nusuk Card, as the Saudi government will soon tighten entry routes to key Haj locations like Masjid al-Haram, Masjid Nabawi, Arafah, Muzdalifah and Mina,” he said.

He said the Saudi government’s action aims to allow only pilgrims with valid visas to perform Haj this year, in response to attempts by some individuals to perform Haj without proper documentation.

“So, stay vigilant and keep your card safe. Those without it may attempt to take advantage of our complacency. Remember, it’s not just our passport but also our permit for performing Haj,” he cautioned. — Bernama