LAHORE – The Punjab government and Guinness World Records (GWR) on Thursday signed an agreement after which the latter has become the official partner of the Punjab Youth Festival (PYF.

The signing ceremony took place in a simple but impressive ceremony at the Punjab Stadium that was filled up by around 20,000 youngsters. GWR South Asia Regional Executive Raymond Marshall and Sports Board Punjab (SBP) Director General Usman Anwar signed the agreement in the presence of SBP Chairman Hamza Shahbaz, PYF Chief Organiser and Punjab Assembly Deputy Speaker Rana Mashhood Ahmed Khan, and PSB Secretary Haroon Ahmed Khan.

Speaking on the occasion, Hamza termed it a historic moment in the history of Punjab. “We will go a long way with this agreement. It will help in sending a soft image of the country to the world. The Punjab government will do everything possible for the development of the youth,” he added.

Earlier, Raymond Marshall said the partnership between the GWR and PYF was unique since it would help showcase the talent and dreams of the Pakistani people. “This is for the first time in the history of Pakistan that a GWR adjudicator will be present on the country’s soil to witness the people attempting 45 Guinness world records,” he said while talking to the media on his arrival to sign the contract.

Marshall said it must be a proud moment for the people of Pakistan and the GWR felt honoured to be the official partner of the festival. “Since the publication of the first Guinness Book of Records in 1955, the GWR has helped millions to realise their dreams. For us, a record is not just a fact; it is a mean of understanding your position in the world and it is precisely due to this reason that we are here today,” he maintained.

Marshall said it was a heartening sign that the GWR and Punjab Youth Festival were working together to encourage the talent and dreams of the Pakistani people. He praised the vision of Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif for organising the grand youth festival to engage the people from all walks of life, especially the youth, in such a large-scale healthy activity.

He said only a visionary leader like Shahbaz Sharif could have taken the initiative of attempting to break the GWR, especially in terms of ‘the largest festival of the world’. “This exciting event has the potential to integrate communities through the promotion of healthy activities,” he added.

Marshall hoped that the Punjab Youth Festival would be part of the next publication of the GWR, since many individuals and groups would be aiming to set new records in different interesting events.