NEW DELHI: In a bid to empower Muslim women, the government has changed the law by permitting them to travel for the annual Haj pilgrimage without any male attendant, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday.
"I noticed that if a Muslim woman wanted to go for the Haj pilgrimage, they cannot go without a 'Mahram' (a male guardian)," Modi said in 2017's last edition of his radio programme 'Mann Ki Baat'.
"And when I enquired about it, I came to know that it was we who have have restricted them for going alone for the Haj. This practice is not followed in many of the Islamic countries," he said.
Modi added that the Minority Affairs Ministry has removed this restriction and will now allow the Muslim women to travel to Haj without a male attendant.
"Till date, 1,300 women have applied to travel for the Haj without any Mahram," the Prime Minister said, adding that "they should get equal opportunity as the men get".