No food allowed inside Grand Mosque
- No eatables allowed inside Grand MosqueBy MUHAMMAD HUMAIDAN - Jul 4, 2010JEDDAH: Director of the department of the gates of the Grand Mosque in the Presidency of the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques Talal ibn Saleh Al-Thaqafi has asked the pilgrims and visitors not to take food, drinks and other disposable material inside the mosque in order to keep the place of worship clean and sanitary.He also asked them to cooperate with the door guards and to abide by the rules aimed at keeping the mosque clean and hygienic for their own comfort.Only small quantities of dates and Arabian coffee are allowed inside the Holy Haram, he told Arab News in a statement on Sunday.He pointed out that bags and suitcases will also not be allowed to be taken inside the mosque.Al-Thaqafi, however, said wheelchairs for people of special needs are permitted to go inside the Grand Mosque. The mosque has 176 gates.He said a series of meetings were recently held with staff of his department to discuss preparations for the summer and Ramadan Umrah with a view to ensuring the comfort of pilgrims and visitors. We discussed the work plans taking into consideration the previous observations in order to deal with them, he said.Saudi authorities and the organizations entrusted to serve the sacred places are keen to provide consummate services to pilgrims and visitors. They are always considering new and innovative ideas to upgrade the level of services to perfection.A proposal is being mulled to install automatic, electronically monitored lock boxes for pilgrims to store their shoes. This idea was proposed by last year by a student at the King Faisal University and is currently being studied by the Hajj Research Center.Among new ideas which were introduced in the Haram for the comfort of the pilgrims are escalators and the water misters to cool temperatures. Special pumps were also built around a number of corners to pump out dirt. The sound and light have been improved inside the Haram so that people can hear prayer calls and Quran recitation and see clearly everything.