Islamabad - Marking Kashmir Solidarity Day on February 5, a day-long Kashmir Cultural Festival will be opened here at the National Institute of Folk and Traditional Heritage (Lok Virsa).

The event is being organised in collaboration with Ministry of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan, Kashmir Cultural Academy, government of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Federal Directorate of Education to express solidarity with the Kashmiri people struggling for their right to self-determination in the Indian Occupied Kashmir through cultural perspective. The major attractions of the festival include congregation of Kashmiri community and youth immigrant, resident Kashmiri community and Kashmiri students dressed in Kashmiri attire are also invited to join and express solidarity with the Kashmiris on the day. A special exhibition of artisans-at-work featuring Kashmiri master artisans in different specialised craft fields will be arranged on the occasion and master artisans have been invited to demonstrate their skills for the visitors.

Exhibition of Kashmiri folk arts and crafts will also be organised at Pakistan National Museum of Ethnology (Heritage Museum), which will remain open for public from 10 am to 7 pm. Live folkloric performances by folk artistes, folk musicians and instrumentalists will also be arranged. They will sing inspirational and national songs to project the Kashmir cause. Since music has no language, its melodious tones reach hearts and can convey any message effectively, said the organisers. A special arts and crafts bazaar will be set up to offer a variety of knickknacks, gemstones, folk arts, crafts, trinkets, etc. to the visitors attending the day-long event while Lok Virsa premises will be decorated with buntings and banners bearing slogans in support of Kashmir cause. A group of traditional Gatka players from Azad Kashmir has also been invited to perform during the Kashmir Cultural Festival.

A prestigious opening ceremony is scheduled on February 5 at Lok Virsa Heritage Museum featuring live colourful performances based on national, patriotic songs and folk songs. Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan, Ali Amin Khan Gandapur will be chief guest on the occasion.