The cabinet, in principle, approved the draft of 'Hajj and Umrah Management Act 2020' today, keeping a provision for authorities to impose fines of up to Tk 50 lakh on Hajj agencies and cancel their registrations in case of irregularities.
For the same offense, Umrah agencies will be fined up to Tk 15 lakh, in addition to cancellation of their registrations.
Legal action will be taken according to prevailing laws for other criminal offenses.
Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam made the announcement following a virtual cabinet meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair, reports Prothom Alo.
According to the draft law, if an agency is given a warning over irregularities for two consecutive years, its license will automatically be revoked for two years, he said.
The agencies will have to seek approval from relevant authorities to change their titles and names, he added.
The Hajj agencies now run under a regulation, and the authorities have been facing difficulties in taking appropriate action against them.
According to the draft act, the overall responsibility for the management of Hajj and Umrah will be bestowed upon the government.
Based on arrangements made with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the government will oversee overall Hajj management.
Per the draft law, if any agency cheats clients in Saudi Arabia, the offense will be treated as having occurred in Bangladesh and appropriate action will be taken, said the cabinet secretary.