Maulana Mazhar Abbas Alvi, vice president of Shia Ulema Council Pakistan and incharge of Hajj and Ziyarat chapter of his party, has alerted that thousands of Pakistani pilgrims could not join Arbaeen Walk from Najaf to Karbala due to delay in issuance of visa by Lahore-based Iranian consulate and lack of provision of security by the Balochistan government and security agencies to the pilgrims convoys from Quetta to Taftan border.
Iranian visa is necessary for those pilgrims who go to Iraq crossing land borders via Iran and those others who travel by air but first go to Iran for pilgrimage of the holy shrine of Imam Reza (AS) and other Imam Zadegan and then to Iraq for pilgrimage of the sacred shrines of Imam Ali, Imam Hussain, Imam Moosa Kazim, Imam Mohammad Taqi, Imam Ali Naqi and Imam Hassan Askari (Peace be Upon Them) and Imam Zadegan and loyal companions of the infallible leaders of Islam.
Maulana Alvi complained that delaying tactics in the issuance of Iranian visa has angered Pakistani pilgrims because the delay is unjustifiable. He also demanded that Iranian visa must be issued to all those passports that were handed over to the relevant officials at the Consulate for visas.
He also demanded of the Federal Government, Balochistan Government and security agencies including the FC authorities to ensure that all pilgrims who have valid visa in their passports must be allowed to cross the border without any delay.
Complaints had it that middlemen are engaged in the visa business they get kickback from the visa seekers for issuance of visas.