Umrah Grand mosque Saudi Arabia
In this file photo taken on June 14, 2018 worshippers gather at the Grand Mosque in Islam's holiest city of Mecca as Muslims perform the Umrah. Image Credit: AFP

Cairo: Saudi Arabia has urged Muslims wishing to undertake umrah during the current Islamic lunar month of Muharram, saying that the Grand Mosque in Mecca where the lesser pilgrimage takes place is not crowded.

The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah posted on its Twitter images of the ritual circumambulation of the Holy Kaaba in the mosque showing the courtyard less crowded with the faithful in different times.

The new season of umrah commenced on July 30, which marked the start of the new Islamic Hijiri year. It followed the end of the Hajj season earlier in July.

Authorities in the kingdom have geared up for the new umrah season that is expected to draw more than 10 million Muslims, according to Saudi officials.

Saudi authorities have said there is no maximum limit for overseas Muslims wishing to perform umrah during the year.

The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah also said that overseas Muslims can enter Saudi Arabia and leave via any airport in the kingdom without being limited to the Jeddah airport, Saudi news portal Ajel reported.

The ministry added that umrah undertaking requires obtaining a permit from the app Eatmarna, provided the applicant is not infected with COVID-19 or has not come in contact with a patient.

Last week, the ministry unveiled the possibility for Muslims, arriving in the kingdom from abroad to undertake umrah, to plan their own itineraries electronically without a mediator on one of accredited portals as part of efforts to facilitate procedures.