The provincial government of Punjab has taken the decision of lifting the longstanding ban on Basant celebrations, thus making the announcement that the yearly kite flying festival would be celebrated in the province in the month of February.
Fayyaz ul Hassan Chohan—the Punjab Information Minister while conversing with the reporters said that this historical cultural festival of Lahore would be revived and would be celebrated in the second week of February.
The minister also informed that Basant was a huge economic activity that could promote tourism.
Chohan said that a committee for Basant would be formed which would be presenting its suggestions to the government in the next week. He said that the celebration should remain within the boundaries of public safety and rules and regulations would be abided.
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Basant is a kite flying festival of the province of Punjab that has been celebrated from generations. The event is scheduled at the end of January or early February and marks the beginning of the spring season.
The festival was banned back in the year 2005 after many incidents leading to casualties were reported because of the sharp glass of kite flyers’ and chemical coated strings cutting throats of the citizens, including children.
The apex court afterwards ruled on a public interest petition and placed a ban on kite flying. It remained banned during the 2 tenures of Shahbaz Sharif—the provincial governor of Punjab during the reign of PML-N.
The ban left the kite and string industry in loss, and also destroyed the commercial activity including both the food and hotel occupancy.