Lok Virsa, National Institute of Folk and Traditional Heritage, Ministry of National Heritage and Integration has announced to hold its annual folk festival, popularly called as Lok Mela, from April 06. While talking to the agency, Lok Virsa’s Executive Director, Khalid Javaid informed that the festival would take place from Friday to Sunday at Lok Virsa Complex, Garden Avenue, Shakarparian. The opening ceremony is scheduled on Friday, 6 April 2012 at 11:00 am.

, which will be graced by the Federal Minister for National Heritage and Integration, Ms Samina Khalid Ghurki as chief guest. The festival aims to revive endangered folk arts, crafts and music as well as to promote and safeguard traditional practitioners associated with Pakistan’s folk heritage. It would serve to disseminate the dynamic creativity of our countryside and give rural folk a pride in their identity. The main thrust of the 10-day festival would be focus on provincial harmony and national integration highlighting contribution of our people in building future Pakistan.

Hundreds of master artisans, folk artists, rural musicians and folk dancers from all over Pakistan including remote and far-flung regions would participate in the festival, bringing with them their creativity in arts, crafts and innovation and win recognition of their talent at the national level, he added. “This unique event has become a symbol of the federation’s recognition of and patronage to our rich cultural diversity and active participation of the people of Pakistan,” Khalid Javaid maintained.

The festival would feature artisans-at-work exhibition, specially designed pavilions depicting culture and traditions of all provinces including Gilgit-Baltistan & AJK, silk route pavilion, exotic craft bazaar, stalls by non-governmental organizations, folk song and dance performances, musical concerts, special attractions for children and families, etc. The festival timings would be daily from 10:00 am to 11:00 pm without break.