12,000 Haj pilgrims to leave from Kolkata

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Kolkata, Oct 30 (UNI) About 12,000 Haj pilgrims from West Bengal, Jharkhand and Orissa will fly off from here on a total of 37 flights beginning today.

The first special flight for the pilgrims is scheduled to leave this evening.

West Bengal Minister for Minority Affairs Abdus Sattar, who saw off the first batch of pilgrims at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Internation Airpoirt today, said, '' The Left Front government is providing all facilities to the pilgrims for a smooth journey. Three helplines and a website have been opened, in this regard.'' Meanwhile, special arrangements had been made by the Airports Authority of India to facilitate quick immigration and security checks for the pilgrims, who are aged and infirm, including some on wheelchairs.

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