Riyadh (Web Desk): More than 2 million Muslims performed Hajj, the one of the world's largest religious gatherings.
The pilgrimage is one of the five pillars of Islam, and all able-bodied Muslims who can afford to do so are expected to take part in the Hajj at least once in their lifetimes.
Pilgrims remained in Mina until Fajr of 9th Dhul Hijjah. Then they proceeded to the valley of Arafat and offered Zuhr and Asr prayers. The Hajj sermon was delivered at Masjid-e-Nimra in Arafat. On the same day, pilgrims left for Muzadalifah after sunset without offering Magrhrib prayer and that was offered along with Isha in Muzdalifah. They spent the whole night in Muzalifah under open sky and rest there until Fajr prayer. In Muzdalifah, the Hujjaj picked up 70 pebbles to perform ritual of Rammi by stoning the Shaitan.
After offering Fajar prayer on 10th of Dhul Hijjah in Muzdalifah, on Sunday, pilgrims moved to Jamaraat and pelt stones on the largest Jamra, representing the devil. Then a sacrifice made in which a lamb or sheep was slaughtered. After this, men's heads were shaved, while women cut a lock of their hair and male pilgrims removed their Ihrams and wore normal clothes. Then the Hujjaj performed Tawaf-e-Ziarat and Sai and returned to their tents in Mina. The pilgrims pelted seven pebbles on three each Jamra or Shaitan on 11th and 12th of Dhul Hijjah and left Mina before sunset. Finally, pilgrims did a farewell Tawaf in Masjid-al Haram before leaving the holy land to complete their Hajj.
This year 200 survivors and relatives of the victims of the March mosque shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand, that killed 51 people attended as guests of the king of Saudi Arabia.