West Java Hajj Pilgrims to Depart from Kertajati Airport this Year
Ministry of Religious Affairs has chosen Kertajati West Java International Airport (BIJB) located in Majalengka, as hajj departure and arrival center, starting from Tuesday (7/1).
The Decree of Minister of Religious Affairs on the Appointment of Kertajati Airport as Hajj Departure and Arrival Center was handed over directly by Minister of Religious Affairs Fachrul Razi to West Java Deputy Governor Uu Ruzhanul Ulum in Majalengka, Tuesday (7/1).
The Decree stipulates that hajj departure and arrival center for West Java pilgrims is moved from Soekarno Hatta Airport, Cengkareng to Kertajati BIJB Airport. The West Java hajj quota is 38,852 hajj pilgrims, and is divided into 97 flight groups.
“All hajj pilgrims from West Java Province will depart from Bekasi hajj dormitory after the entire Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) process and other one-stop services are completed. Furthermore, all pilgrims will depart by bus from Bekasi Hajj Dormitory to the BIJB Airport,” Fachrul Razi said.
The Minister also said that the Government continues to improve services for Indonesian hajj pilgrims. The BIJB Hajj Departure and Arrival Center is expected to improve services for West Java hajj pilgrims.
“This year we will start a pilot project to accelerate the immigration process for the arrival of hajj pilgrims. If possible, (the immigration process) will be conducted in Jeddah or on the plane, so when (the pilgrims) arrives at Indonesia, they can go home immediately,” Fachrul said.
In the meantime, Head of West Java Regional Office of the Ministry of Religious Affairs Buchori explained that the departure process was divided into several stages. First is the process of handing over pilgrims to the Hajj Committee (PPIH) in Bekasi. The handing over ceremony is usually attended by Regent or Mayor and takes only 2 hours.
The second stage is medical examinations of hajj pilgrims and verification of pilgrimage documents. At this stage, passports, living costs and bracelets are also distributed. Pilgrims who have met the requirements can directly enter hajj dormitory room.
Furthermore, pilgrims would take a rest in the Hajj dormitory for approximately 8.5 hours, before leaving for Kertajati Airport. Buchori estimated that the travel time from the Bekasi Hajj Dormitory to Kertajati Airport would take around four hours, two hours longer than travel time to Soekarno-Hatta Airport.
“Taking the distance into account, we cut the hajj pilgrims rest time from 9 hours to 8.5 hours,” Buchori added.
Bukhori expressed hope that West Java hajj pilgrims would get Fast Track service facilities in Saudi and all immigration processes would be conducted in Indonesia. (PR of Ministry of Religious Affairs/ES)
Translated by: Ridwan Ibadurrohman
Reviewed by: Yuyu Mulyani