HYDERABAD:It was a dream come true for Bibi Jan, a pilgrim from Hyderabad, for a visit to the Holy Land, where heavenly bliss touches earth, is a lifetime wish for any believer.
But destiny had some other plans for this 60-year-old pilgrim, who met with a tragic end, caught in the ghastly stampede that claimed the lives of more than 700 pilgrims, Thursday.
Bibi Jan from L B Nagar in Hyderabad was returning to her tent after performing the ritual called ‘Stoning the devil’ at Mina when she was caught in the stampede. Her husband Abdul Majeed and two relatives managed to escape unhurt, but Bibi Jan caught in the chaos. She was rushed to a nearby hospital where she was declared brought dead.
According to Abdul Majeed, rescue teams arrived late and the entire situation was chaotic. It was difficult for them even to leave the place. As per her family’s wish, Bibi Jan would be cremated in the holy city. Though her children wanted to attend the funeral, none of them would be able to reach Mecca due to Visa problems.
Her daughter Sheik Shahanaz, who lives in Hyderabad, requested the State government to intervene and make arrangements to bring the body of Bibi Jan to Hyderabad, but the Haj Committee said it impossible at this juncture.
Mahboob Ali, son-in-law of the victim, said he had spoke to her before she left for Mina Thursday morning. “She was happy to perform the rituals.” They were almost leaving the place when it occurred. She could have escaped had she left the place few minutes earlier, he added.
Though Bibi Jan hails from Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh, her family had settled in Hyderabad 25 years ago. Abdul Majeed is a businessman and the family lives at Cosmopolitan colony in L B Nagar.
Talking to Haj Committee officials over phone, Abdul Majeed requested to make arrangements for his early departure from Mecca.