Yahya Hamza Koshak was considered an authority on the architecture and history of the ancient site
JEDDAH: Saudis on Tuesday were mourning the loss of Yahya Hamza Koshak following his death at the age of 80. An engineer by profession, he became famous for his services to the Zamzam well.
Koshak, also known as the “father of engineers,” was a former director general of the National Water Company and member of the Okaz Organization for Press and Publication.
He was born in Makkah, where his father, a merchant, worked during the Umrah season, serving as chairman of the Establishment of Motawifs of Pilgrims of Turkish Muslims of Europe America and Australia.
His mother was a close friend of the wife of the late King Faisal, Princess Effat, whom she met at the Makkah’s Grand Mosque.
Koshak studied in one of Taif city’s first schools after it was founded by King Faisal and Princess Effat.
He studied engineering at Ain Shams University in Cairo, but completed his degree in Riyadh. He later continued his education in the US, where he obtained a Ph.D. in engineering sciences.
His nephew Nabeel Koshak told Arab News that the late engineer was dear to those who worked with him.
• Yahya Hamza Koshak was born in Makkah.
• Koshak studied in one of Taif city’s first schools.
• He studied engineering at Ain Shams University in Cairo, but completed his degree in Riyadh.
• He later continued his education in the US, where he obtained a Ph.D. in engineering sciences.
• He led the cleaning team of the Zamzam well four decades ago.
• Koshak wrote a book, ‘Zamzam: The Holy Water,’ in which he recorded his observations inside the well.
“He was very social, close to people, and always kind and did not like to hurt anyone. He was light hearted — these were the characteristics that distinguished his personality.”
Koshak “was like a father to me,” and the family remained proud that he earned the trust of the Kingdom’s leadership, his nephew said.
“He greeted and received the king every year during the last 10 days of Ramadan.”
Koshak held a number of government positions in Makkah over a long career, including undersecretary for technical affairs at the Makkah Municipality.
He led the cleaning team of the Zamzam well four decades ago and wrote a book, “Zamzam: The Holy Water,” in which he recorded his observations inside the well.
“Cleaning the Zamzam well was one of his most important projects, a huge task under the direction of the late King Khalid,” his nephew said.
In his book, Koshak outlined the history of the well and its water sources, and also documented the archaeological objects found during the cleaning project.
The late engineer said: “By observation, it became clear that there are only two main sources of water, one toward the Kaaba, and the other toward Ajyad. As for the third source, which historical narratives said is on the side of Jabal Abu Qubays and Al-Safa, I found instead 12 small holes between building stones.”
Koshak’s interests included alternative medicine, which led to him establishing a specialist center in Jeddah.
Vaccination against COVID-19 a major condition for participating in Hajj: Health Minister HARAMAIN SHARIFAIN
OKAZ: On Monday, Saudi Health Minister Tawfiq Al-Rabiah directed that the acceptance of participants in the Hajj season be linked to receiving the Corona "Covid-19" vaccine, considering it the main condition for participation.
Rabiah said: "You must prepare early to secure the manpower required to operate the health facilities in Makkah Al-Mukarramah, the holy sites and Madinah, and the entry points for pilgrims for the Hajj season for the year 2021."
He added: "A corona vaccination committee must be formed for the participants in the Hajj and Umrah season."
He further said: "The compulsion of the taking of the Corona vaccine for those wishing to participate, as it is one of the conditions for participation in the next Hajj season
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques provides relief to Hajj and Umrah sector
The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdul Aziz, has approved a package of incentives for individuals and institutions affected by the Hajj and Umrah sector due to the Corona epidemic.
According to the Saudi Press Agency, these measures include measures to provide annual fee and tax exemptions to organizations and individuals providing services to pilgrims and pilgrims in various fields
These facilities are being provided to Hajj and Umrah services institutions that have been hit hardest by the Corona epidemic.
The incentive package to Hajj and Umrah institutions are part of the government's efforts to provide financial assistance to those most affected by the epidemic.
Among the concessions given to Hajj and Umrah institutions affected by Corona is a one-year exemption from municipal fees charged for the accommodation of pilgrims in Makkah and Madinah.
Immigrants working in Hajj and companies have been given a six-month rebate in the 'Al-Maqbal Al-Mali' fee.
The Ministry of Tourism will renew the licenses for a one-year stay in Makkah and Madinah at no charge. This period can also be extended
The stay of foreigners affiliated with Hajj and Umrah institutions has been postponed for six months and they have been given the facility to pay the fee in installments for one year.
Hajj and Umrah bus permits will be extended for one year free of cost.
Customs duty on new buses providing services on the occasion of Hajj season 1442 AH has been postponed for three months and they have been allowed to be paid in installments for four months.
It should be noted that Saudi Arabia has announced more than 150 incentive packages for the rehabilitation of the institutions affected by the negative effects of the Corona epidemic, for which an amount of one trillion 80 billion riyals has been allocated
Hajj 2021 To Take Place As Usual With No Limits, Saudi King Assures
Great news for all Muslims worldwide as King Salman assures that Hajj 2021 will take place as per schedule with no pilgrims limit, reuters confirmed.
Unlike the Hajj in 2020, when only a few pilgrims were allowed to perform it, In 2021, the Saudi king has given go ahead as the holy sites are geared for fighting against the ongoing pandemic, coronavirus.
King Salman further approved some latest initiatives to give prompt healthcare to pilgrims coming for Hajj pilgrimage.
This includes exempting accommodation facilities annual fees from municipal, commercial activities in Madinah and Makkah, where the Hajj takes place.
For expats who are working in any activities that are related to Hajj and Umrah, the collection of renewal residency fee will be postponed for the next six points, which can be later paid in terms of yearly payment, confirms Saudi Press Agency.
Bus licenses of those transporting pilgrims will also be valid for a year without any additional charge. Customs duties collection will be postponed by three months which can also be paid later in four months.
Coronavirus Vaccine is Mandatory for Hajj Pilgrimage in 2021 According to the Hajj and Umrah Ministry of Saudi Arabia, getting the Coronavirus vaccine is mandatory for Hajj in 2021. It was earlier announced that the covid vaccine is also compulsory for Umrah pilgrims.
Effective Sanitization The management of the holy sites has been installing the latest technologies to sanitize every pilgrim visiting the sacred places and installing the technology to identify the people with high fever or any medical issues
Taraweeh to be performed as usual during Ramadan 2021 at the holy mosques Masjid al Haram and Masjid an Nabawi.
Just a few days after the big Hajj 2021 announcement, that the hajj will take place with no limits this year, the Muslims all around the world happy to learn that the local public will be able to perform Taraweeh at Grand Mosque in Makkah and Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah, Saudi Arabia.
Back in 2020, The Taraweeh prayer took place with only a few people, those people were the management of the Grand Mosque, as the country was in lockdown and didn’t allow the general public to enter the holy mosques
Luckily, this year general public will be able to attend the Taraweeh prayer at the Grand Mosque and Prophet’s Mosque while following the precautionary measures and social distancing. This is only heard that only vaccinated people were allowed in the Taraweeh prayer, but the news of the vaccine has not been confirmed yet.
Recently, United Arab Emirates have also allowed Taraweeh prayers in the country and more country will further follow the course to allow prayers during Ramadan 2021.
Social distancing is a must while praying as well as the management of the holy mosques have installed technology to curb the spread of Coronavirus.
Those who wish to perform Umran during Ramdan 2021 must get vaccinated otherwise the management would not allow you to perform Umrah.
The Ministry of Health has decided to require all external pilgrims wishing to perform Hajj this year to obtain two doses of WHO-approved vaccine for COVID-19.
The Hujjaj will be required to receive the second dose of the vaccine before arriving in the Kingdom atleast one week before Hajj.
The Hujjaj will also need to obtain a certified and negative test of the COVID-19 PCR test, 72 hours before their arrival in the Kingdom.
The Ministry will also require all pilgrims to be subjected to a 72 hours of Mandatory Quarantine, which will only end after a negative PCR test.
In the Hajj 1442 Health Control Plan, the Ministry noted the need for all pilgrims and workers to wear tags and to ensure approved housing and mobility of at least one and a half meters between one and the other, as well as scheduling the flow of pilgrims into groups, so that only 100 pilgrims per group would be limited to the duration of the various rituals of Hajj
The Ministry has also directed to exclude the most vulnerable groups from pilgrimage and limiting age groups to only 18 to 60 years old.
The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah on Thursday clarified a few queries often raised by those intending to perform Umrah and regarding the application “Eatmarna”
The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah revealed that the current regulation for the reservation of Umrah allows the issuance of a permit every 15 days,
It also confirmed that the permitted ages for Umrah from within the Kingdom according to the instructions of the Ministry of Health are from 18 to 70 years from the previous maximum allowed age of 60 years
The General President for the Affairs of the Grand Mosque and the Prophet's Mosque, Prof. Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Sudais, received the Corona vaccine, in the presence of the CEO of the Makkah Al-Mukarramah Health Cluster, Dr. Dilshad Ali Abbas, at the Corona Vaccine Center, King Abdullah Medical City.
Al-Sudais praised the efforts of the government of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques in providing everything that contributes to the service and safety of citizens and residents in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, appreciating at the same time the great role played by the Ministry of Health in providing all the needs of all residents of these blessed countries.
This cannot be undone and I am sure it will be greatly appreciated.
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