Kite-flying competition: Lahore beats Gujranwala 3-2
* Gig parade highlight of Friday’s celebrations
LAHORE: Lahore is covered in shades of Basant, as the city springs alive with the coming of the spring festival. Most parts of the city – the Walled City leading the way – have been lavishly decorated and everything is set for the kite-flying mania that will envelope Lahore on February 6.
On Friday, the All Pakistan Kite Flying Competition launched at Race Course Park. Sixteen teams from all over Pakistan are participating in the contest. The first match, between teams from Gujranwala and Lahore, was won 3-2 by Lahore. The competition will continue all month. Kasur and Sialkot will face each other at the park on Saturday. At another side of Lahore, a ‘buggi’ (local fancy horse-carriage) parade was inaugurated in the city under the banner of Lahore Basant Festival. The parade started from Alhamra Art Center and steered through Abbot Road, Shimla Hill, Davis Road and Agerton road to return back to Alhamra. Most guests on the horse carriages were overseas Pakistanis, who are here to celeberate Basant.
Kite shops inside walled city have been richly decorated and boast hundreds of coloured kites, along with fireworks, pressure horns and duppattas. The city canal has become a grand attraction for visitors with its flower decorations and lights. Saturday’s coincidence with the Kashmir Day public holiday has made it easy for youngsters to begin celebrations from Friday night. Roads were choked with traffic, mainly due to the swell in Lahore’s population as local and foreign guests continue to arrive for Basant.
Several TV channels have invited a number of guests from outside of Lahore to add to Basant fervour. Most rooftops at major spots in the Walled City are booked by multinationals. shoaib ahmed