Leave Haj to believers; end all subsidies to religious events: Popular Front

Thu, 01/18/2018 - 17:53 -- althaf

Refering to the Central government move to scrape off Haj Sabsidy, Popular Front of India Central Secretariat has, in a statement, said that government shall leave religious functions to believers and end all the subsidies currently being granted to various religious events in and out of the country.
The sudden removal of the Subsidy for Haj Pilgrim which has been in place since decades fails to answer many questions. Muslim community will have no difficult to agree that Haj is not something to be performed with financial aids from outside. Yet due to the way it is administered, the much talked about Haj Sabsidy has not been of any help to Muslims. With the monopoly of Air India on the Haj travels, the subsidy has been meaningless. For years, the government has been charging pilgrims extra, more than the amount they are granted by way of subsidy. Once the monopoly of Air India and government control on Haj travels are lifted, cost of the Hajj will get reduced more than what it is now with subsidy. Therefore government must stop helping Air India’s exploitation of Haj pilgrims and engage other airline companies who can prove same service at lower costs.
The government presents the Supreme Court judgment as the reason for the decision. This claim cannot be taken at the face value because we don’t see the same diligence on the part of government in implementing several other more important court orders. Moreover, there is no explanation as to why a sudden end only to Haj Subsidy while there are many other religious events that are still being funded, like Kumbh Melas, Amarnath, Kailash, Manasa, etc. Hence the decision can only be viewed as discriminatory and divisive. Popular Front, therefore, demands that, along with Haj Sabsidy, central government take immediate steps to end all other ongoing funding to all religious events.

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