He was warmly welcomed with high spirits by the Muslim community in the coastal city. A large crowd welcomed him at the Talapady border as well. Shihab Chottur, started his journey on June 2 from Athavanad near Velancheryin Malappuram district of Kerala. He stayed at the Juma Masjid in Pumpwell prior to returning his voyage on Friday.
Shihab runs a supermarket in Kerala. He has been preparing for the past eight months for performing the Haj in 2023. He has pledged to travel across six nations but without travelling in any vehicle. He will have to traverse through the roads of India, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan and and Kuwait to reach all the way to Mecca, the holiest city for Muslims, in Saudi Arabia.
His goal is to walk 8,640 kms in 280 days and walks at an average of 25 km per day. Shihab has received aid from V Muraleedharan, state Union Minister for External Affairs, and several others in making this journey a success. His route will pass through the states of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, and will enter Pakistan via Wagah border. Carrying a 10kg backpack comprising of few t-shirts, trousers, bedsheet and an umbrella, Shihab is strong willed and determined to complete his journey.
Taking shelter at night in masjids on the way, he marches forward everyday with the support and cooperation of his family and well wishers.Haj pilgrimage is of the sanctimonious pillars of Islam. Occurring annually, people travel to Mecca in Saudi Arabia, the holiest city for Muslims. It is believed to be a religious duty that everyone in the community should undertake at least once in their lifetime. Shihab has been welcomed in every city with open arms and everyone wishes for him to complete his Haj successfully.