India and Saudi Arabia signed the 2019 Bilateral Annual Haj Agreement on Thursday. Union Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Saudi Arabia's Haj and Umrah Minister Mohammad Saleh bin Taher Benten were at the event
Mr Naqvi said the Saudi government has always played an active role in ensuring the safety and comfort of Indian Haj pilgrims and that has strengthened bilateral relations. India-Saudi Arabia relations have achieved new heights under the leadership and guidance of Saudi Arabia's King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he was quoted as saying by his office.
Mr Naqvi said a large number of Muslim women are likely to go to Haj without 'Mehram' (male companion) next year. More than 2,100 women have already applied.
The Haj Committee of India has received more than 2.47 lakh applications next year's pilgrimage, Mr Naqvi said.