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Extreme Heat Fallout: 9 Kashmiri Hajis among 68 Indian pilgrims dead. Death toll reaches 648

Ziraat Times News Network

SRINAGAR: Nine Kashmiri Hajj pilgrims are among 68 Indian nationals who have died due to extreme heat conditions during the annual Hajj Pilgrime this year. Among the deceased are two Kashmir bankers, Manzoor Ahmad Rangrez and his wife, Rifat. The couple were residents of Rawalpora.

Jammu and Kashmir Haj Committee confirmed their demise. Right now, two Jammu and Kashmir pilgrims are missing.

Manzoor Ahmad Rangrez, a retired bank officer aged 62, and his wife Rifat, aged 57, who was currently serving at the Nowgam branch, tragically lost their lives during the sacred pilgrimage. They had been missing since the 9th of Zilhaj, a period marked by intense religious activities and extreme climatic conditions. It has been confirmed that the cause of their deaths was heatstroke, a risk that is heightened during the peak summer months in Saudi Arabia.

Meanwhile, a  diplomat in Saudi Arabia said on Wednesday that 68 Indian nationals died during the Hajj pilgrimage this year marked by searing heath, bringing the overall tally to  648.
“We have confirmed around 68 dead… Some are because of natural causes and we had many old-age pilgrims. And some are due to the weather conditions, that’s what we assume,” the diplomat, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told AFP.

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