Pakistan Launches Mobile App to Digitise Haj Operations

Pakistan has taken a significant step towards digitising Haj operations for pilgrims by developing a mobile app. The Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications, in collaboration with the National Information Technology Board (NITB), has launched this app to facilitate Haj registration via SMS.

The Ministry of Religious Affairs opened registrations for Haj 2024, which is expected to take place in mid-June next year, under the government scheme last month. The application submission process for the pilgrimage will continue until December 22.

The mobile app was jointly launched by the caretaker Minister for IT, Dr Umar Saif, and interim Minister for Religious Affairs, Aneeq Ahmed. The launch of the Haj app marks a milestone in the country’s process of digitisation, which has been accelerated under the directions of the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC).

The app provides a range of features to assist pilgrims. It enables them to register using a One-Time Password (OTP) received via SMS. Users are provided with a unique ID, which is their CNIC and application number. Pilgrims can view and update their personal information, including contact details and identification information.

The application allows pilgrims to view their Haj application status in real-time updates. It provides information collected from the application form, including personal information, group information, Mehram information, helper information, additional facilities, Haj dues, nominee information, and the applicant’s bank account details.

Pilgrims can also access information about their Haj group, including details of group members. The application enables them to view their Haj training schedules, including dates, times, and locations. It displays flight details, including flight numbers, departure cities, dates, and times for both departure and return flights.

The application presents information about accommodations in Makah and Madina, including sector, building, and room details. It also provides information about the Maktab (camp) location. Pilgrims can check the status of their Haj dues and refund statuses.

The application allows pilgrims to submit complaints, requests, and general inquiries, and track and manage these requests efficiently. The application is multilingual and allows pilgrims to switch to their preferred language for easy understanding and usage. Initially, two languages (English and Urdu) have been added, although the system will have the provision to add more languages.

The application has an offline maps feature that allows pilgrims to choose their destination with the shortest route. The application also allows users to share their location. Multiple destinations can also be added to this application.

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