The Madinah airport started implementing its Haj plan to prepare for this year’s first batches of pilgrims coming to perform the Haj rituals and visit the holy sites. The plan includes ensuring smooth movement of pilgrims and the completion of all entry procedures in record time, while ensuring at the same time the importance of validating pilgrims identities and papers and keeping in consideration the intensity of visitors flocking to the airport around the clock.
The director of passports at the Madinah Airport, Bader Al-Mutairi, said that the airport terminal has created lounges with at least 90 counters operated by staff to receive the pilgrims with their passports after flight officials have provided data on the flight number and the identity of arrivals.
The counters are being operated by specialized and trained officers who operate specialized equipment installed at the counters such as fingerprinting devices. All 90 workers at the counters have been trained to compare the image and make sure that it belongs to the holder of the passport. In case of suspicion, the person will be transferred to a counter-forgery department to check the validity of the data and fraud, and deal with cases according to instructions.
The director of the Passport Institute and commander of the support and assistance force, Maj. Gen. Khalid bin Abdul Mohsen Al-Owais, recently visited Prince Mohammad bin Abdulaziz International Airport in Madinah to check on the progress of work in the Haj halls, and the workers and employees of the passport department, officers, and students to stand on their preparations for the performance of tasks and duties assigned to them in the reception of pilgrims.
Al-Mutairi said that the staff is working with the best of their abilities in cooperation with all sectors involved at the airport, including both the government or the civil authorities for the integration of the system to serve the pilgrims. He further pointed out that Haj plan was previously prepared at the beginning of the year. He noted that they study positives and negatives of pilgrimages in past years, where they take advantage of the positives and overcame the negatives in order to ensure smooth operations.
(Courtesy- Arab News)