Tourism Corporation Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (TCKP) Managing Director Junaid Khan on Thursday said that this year the Chilim Jusht festival will be celebrated in a befitting manner to promote tourism and cultural activities in the province.

“Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is blessed with exotic valleys and unique rich culture and traditions. The province is a peaceful destination for foreign and domestic tourists to come and enjoy the beauty of nature it has to offer,” the managing director said while presiding over a meeting here.

The participants, including TCKP General Manager (Admin and Properties) Sajjad Hameed, Manager Marketing Haseena Shaukat and others, reviewed the arrangements for the upcoming Chilim Jusht or Joshi festival.

The MD was told that preparations for the festival were in full swing as the local people have launched the cleanliness drive, while the TCKP authorities have planned to set up a tent village to facilitate the tourists in the scenic Kalash valley in Chitral.

He was informed that this year the local people were very enthusiastic and were impatiently waiting for festival to celebrate it in a befitting manner.

They have started a cleanliness campaign well before the commencement of the event.

The festival, which will kick off on May 14 at the three Kalash valleys of Bumburet, Birir and Rambur, marks the arrival of summer season and provides an opportunity to the visitors to witness the lifestyles of the Kalash people.

The people of Kalash celebrate the festival while dancing to the traditional music and drumbeats. They thank god Goshidai as they believe it protects their herds during spring and summer seasons.

Young girls and boys sing and dance in groups in the community halls. Houses are decorated and the Kalash people wear new clothes that are specifically prepared for the occasion.

Main feature of the festival is selection of life partner for unmarried boys and girls.

Last year, the TCKP had established a tent village for the tourists. The facility attracted a large number of visitors to the festival.

A tent village will also be set up this year besides extending every possible support to the Kalash tribe so that the people could revive their traditions and customs and celebrate their religious rites.

According to organisers, Kalash men and women were seen shopping for the festival in the Chitral bazaar while in the valleys they were busy preparing traditional dresses for the festival.

The Kalash girls spent lavishly on purchase of clothes and ornaments for the event and the occasion is being used to show off their financial status.

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