Why do 24 guards protect Hajr-e-Aswad?

Hajr-e-Aswad was sent to Prophet Ibrahim عليه السلام from the heavens by Allah Almighty. Then he was asked to set the stone at a corner of the  Holy Kaaba.  The tawaf starts and ends at the black stone.

24 guards protect it for 24 hours: The guard stands there holding onto a rope. For every hour, a different guard is appointed. So 24 guards change shifts after every hour in 24 hours.

Each guard appointed for an hour has various tasks to perform. The guard must remain alert to the happening around.

He must not only protect the black stone but shall also be vigilant about the surroundings. He must see that if anyone needs medical assistance. During Hajj days, due to a large number of people around the Holy Kaaba, accidents and suffocation occur.

The guard appointed at the black stone shall see if any pilgrim needs help and shall inform other guards to reach the victim. Major Sameh Al-Sulami, who is the spokesperson at the Grand Mosque Police also briefed about the duties of a guard appointed at the Hajr-e-Aswad.

How to kiss the black stone? He said that the guard shall guide the pilgrims about how to kiss the black stone. In order to avoid hustle and misfortunate incident, the guard shall make sure that pilgrims who wish to kiss the stone, make a queue and wait for their turn.

A guard appointed at the Hajr-e-Aswad has multiple tasks to perform. Every guard is appointed for an hour per day. The Grand Mosque Police has appointed 24 guards at the Hajr-e-Aswad.

Source: Saudi Gazette

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Steve has been living in Saudi Arabia since 2013 and writing about Saudi rules, regulations, guides, and procedures since then.