Umrah Grand mosque Saudi Arabia
The Muslim month of Ramadan is usually the peak of umrah. Image Credit: AFP

Cairo: Nearly 2 million Muslims have performed umrah or lesser pilgrimage at the Grand Mosque in the Saudi holy city of Mecca since the sacred month of Ramadan started on April 2, a Saudi official has said.

They have undertaken the rituals since the first of Ramadan until its 10th day in line with health precautions, added Osama bin Mansour, the deputy head at the Presidency General for Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques for Congregation Management.

“Integrated services are provided at the Grand Mosque to suit needs of pilgrims and worshippers including designating tracks for the elderly and physically disabled people,” he said, according to Sabq newspaper.

“The Presidency General has devoted its full capacity to serve the umrah pilgrims during the holy month of Ramadan and fully designated the courtyard [around the holy Kabba] for them to undertake the circumambulation ritual,” he added.

The Muslim month of Ramadan is usually the peak of umrah.

Saudi authorities have recently eased measures for performing umrah as the kingdom has largely relaxed restrictions against COVID-19.

The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah has lifted several precautionary measures including cancellations of permits for praying at the Grand Mosque and visiting the Prophet’s Mohammed Mosque in Medina.

The Ministry has also said the immunisation check to enter both holy sites has been scrapped for all worshippers.

The ministry has, moreover, cancelled the once-obligatory registration of immunisation data for overseas Muslims to get an umrah permit.

A mandatory presentation of a negative PCR test result to get access to both sacred places has been lifted too.