Kochi | Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy today announced the government would release Rs one crore for the development of Haj Camp at Nedumbasserry.
Flagging off the first Haj flight from Nedumbasserry Airport, about 30 km from here, he said though the camp at the Nedumbassery was a temporary one, the same camp should be maintained in the remaining years while retaining the existing facilities at the Karippur camp.
With the temporary camp at Nedumbasserry, Haj pilgrims from central-northern part of Kerala could perform their pilgrimage through the airport, he added.
The first Haj flight carrying 340 pilgrims, including 185 women, took off from the Nedumbassery Airport at 1345 hrs today.
Air India, the official carrier, would operate altogether 19 services in 16 days to carry 6375 pilgrims, including 3092 females from Kerala, Lakshadweep (294) and Mahe (48), sources told UNI.There would be one flight daily, while two flights would be operated on September seven, eight and nine. In normal days, the flight will take off at 1345 hrs while on those days the Air India operate two flights, the timings would be at 1345 hrs and 1700 hrs.
After performing Haj pilgrimage, the Hajees would start their return trip from October 15 to 29.
The pilgrims will be taken to Mecca while the return trip would be from Madeena, the sources added Kerala Industries Minister P K Kunhalikutty , PWD Minister Ebrahim Kunju and MLAs, MPs were present.