From Mohammad Ibrahim, in Makkah
A noticeable phenomenon in this year’s Hajj is the large number of child pilgrims accompanying their parents in their journey of a life time as Hajj statistical committees estimated above 7,000 children that accompanied their parents for hajj this year.
According to the survey, majority of the children were infants, young boys and girls who are up to 13 years of age and were also children of the expatriates living in the kingdom.
Peoples Daily equally observed that the children, particularly the infants, were often carried on the shoulder by their parents during dawafi in Ka’aba or on their way to mosque.
Abdulaziz Abu Mansour,11-year-old Saudi, said he had insisted to come for Hajj “I told my father to take me for Hajj after seeing children much younger than me doing Haj in previous years.”“
“I went with my father to Arafat and Muzdalifah. I encountered no difficulties. I am now in Mina, getting ready to go to Makkah for Tawaf Al-Ifadha,” he said. His father, Abu Mansour said he was keen to bring Abdulaziz, his only son, with him for Hajj so as to imbibe in him the knowledge of Hajj rites and to mix with the pilgrims hailing from more than 160 countries.
Saud Al-Thimali, a Saudi in his 40s from Taif, said he brought his children with him to teach them the correct methods of doing the Hajj. He said he learned from his friend’s experience in last year’s
Hajj. He had performed Hajj with his children and taught them the correct way to do Hajj and also asked them to observe all during the rituals.