Srinagar, Aug 15: The seven-day Jashn-e-Azadi event organised by the Army top mark the 75th Independence Day concluded in Gurez on Sunday.
A statement of the Army issued here said, “As the entire nation coalesced to celebrate ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ for commemorating the glorious 75 years of India’s independence, the Army, in consonance with the national mission of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to carry out an intensive country-wide campaign to focus on citizen participation at a local level that would add up to significant national gains organised a national integration festival ‘Jashn-e-Azadi’ with pomp and show from August 9 to 15 in the pristine and scenic Gurez Valley of Bandipora district. The event was attended by famous celebrities like Mateena Rajput.”
The Army statement said that event was being eulogised as the ‘Jashn-e-Gurez 2.0’ celebrated by the Army after a long gap of two years, primarily due to Covid-19 restrictions.
“The primary aim of the festival was to reinvigorate the energy, enthusiasm and pride of the people towards the nation and to promote the rich and varied cultural heritage of Gurez to attract more tourists to this serene and scenic valley. The festival also aimed at catalysing the socio-economic development of Gurez by skilling and guiding the local youth towards sustainable avenues of self-employment through tourism,” the statement said.
It said that the festival started on August 9 with the flagging off of ‘Jashn-e-Azadi’ trek to Patalwan Lakes.
“The initiative aimed at exploring the unexplored treks of the Gurez Valley. During the week-long festival, various inter-village and inter-school games and competition such as cricket, carom, quiz, mini marathon, walkathon and badminton for girls and women were conducted to address all sections of the society. The highlight of the event was the traditional pony race which is an inherent part of Gurezi culture and is a highly-acclaimed and participated event,” the Army statement said.
It said that the grand finale of ‘Jashn-e-Azadi’ was conducted on August 15 at Dawar Helipad where a colorful event consisting of a Gurez mela, paragliding display and cultural shows were showcased in a “for the people by the Army event”.