Cultural festival draws crowds

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GILGIT: A cultural festival was held at the high altitude Rakaposhi viewpoint in Gulmat Nagar district heralding the arrival of spring season in the region. The festival was organised by Nagar Art and Cultural Council.
Gilgit-Baltistan Governor Mir Ghazanfar Ali Khan was the chief guest. Local elders, youth, foreigners, and artistes dressed in traditional costumes graced the occasion. Local dancers and singers enthralled the audience, while stalls of local food and handicrafts attracted large crowds. A sword dance was also held on the occasion.
The event is organised when the temperatures become moderate in the area.

Rakaposhi is 7,788 meters above the sea level and the world`s 29th highest mountain situated in Nagar, watching over the Karakoram Highway. The peak is surrounded by famous glaciers and valleys like Bagrot, Minapin and Jaglot, Hunza and Naltar.

Raees Safi, an organiser, said revival of the cultural event would help preserve the unique local culture, which is near extinction due to the official apathy.

He said holding of the event was an attempt to create awareness among the people, especially youth, about their culture.

Local people were happy to see the revival of the cultural festival as they had the opportunity after a long time to listen to the music of Nagar at the Rakaposhi base camp.

Speaking on the occasion, Governor Ghazanfar Ali said the local culture was their identity, which should be sustained by preserving and promoting it. He said in the past, foreigners are always attracted to the unique culture of the local people, adding Nagar was famous for its polo and music.

The governor said as his mother belonged to Nagar, he knew well the local traditions.
He announced construction of a sports stadium at Nagar, and financial assistance for local musicians and the polo team.

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