About 1,000 travelers arrived in Mina Valley outside Mecca on Wednesday to take part in this year’s season.
Meanwhile, the Saudi government has imposed restrictions on the spread of the virus that has brought the global economy to its knees and forced the closure of businesses and places of worship around the world.
The Hajj rituals begin on Tarwiyah Day (fetching water) and there are no major rituals, so pilgrims will spend their time praying and meditating until sunrise on Thursday, Arab News reported.
About 2.5 million visitors can be found in Mina, 7km northeast of the Grand Mosque in Makkah and is often the site of the world’s largest tent city.
But the coronavirus-related restrictions mean that this year travelers among the Sudis or immigrants living in the Kingdom can perform the hajj.
Participants in this year’s program were placed in one place after checking the temperatures as they first arrived in Makkah. Health workers clean their luggage.
Infected health and safety workers clean the area around the Kaaba, a building located in the center of the Grand Mosque for Muslims around the world to pray.
As a precautionary measure, hajj administrators use ropes through the Kaaba, and pilgrims will not be allowed to touch it, reducing the chances of infection.
In addition, health facilities, mobile clinics and ambulances have been arranged to care for travelers. Travelers must wear a mask and monitor public transportation.
All travelers had to be tested for coronaviruses before arriving in Makheka and would be discontinued after the trip.
They are provided with available equipment including fertility stones at Jamarat stone masonry, disinfectants, masks, prayer line and ihram, a white seamless dress worn by guests.
On Thursday, pilgrims will travel to Arafat to hear the sermon, the highest point of the Hajj. After that they will go to Muzdalifah and spend the night before returning to Mina with the traditions of Jamarat.
Zelkin, an Azerbaijani traveler who lives and works in Jubail, is among those given the opportunity to perform the hajj this year.
“It’s really hard to do this kind of order in the short term during the epidemic. I can’t believe this (getting a chance to do a hajj). It’s a one-time opportunity in life. That is not my luck, it is the will of Allah and you should follow his will, ”he said.