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ISLAMABAD: Secretary Religious Affairs Sikander Ismail informed the Senate Standing Committee on Religious Affairs on Friday that those persons who had gone for Haj during the past five years would not be allowed to attend the pilgrimage this year, DawnNews reported.

He added that 140,648 Pakistani pilgrims would attend the haj pilgrimage this year and applicants of the government's haj scheme would be shortlisted within 15 days.

The Senate Standing Committee on Religious Affairs also adopted resolution in condemnation of the desecration of the holy sites of non-muslims in the country.

Members of Standing Committee on Religious Affairs chaired by Senator Hafiz Hamdullah declared the burning of a dharamashala in Sukkur district of Sindh as 'deplorable' and said that such incidents brought a bad name to the country.

PIA reduces fare

Pakistan International Airline (PIA) reduced its fares on Umrah as well as some domestic sectors, on the directions of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to pass the benefit of the reduction in oil prices during the past three months, to the customers.

Reduction in airfares for Umrah are as follows:North (Punjab, AJK, GB and KP) by Rs. 6,000 from Rs. 72,000 to Rs. 66,000.

South (Sindh, Balochistan) by Rs. 6,000 from Rs. 60,000 to Rs. 54,000 Fares reduced on Domestic sectors by Rs. 2,000 (Multan,Faisalabad, Peshawar, Quetta, DG Khan etc) .