Basant in Pakistan

Posted on March 22, 2008
Filed Under >Shiraz Bashir, Culture & Heritage, Society, Sports
27 Comments
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Shiraz Bashir

Basant – the kite flying festival of spring – was supposed to be celebrated last weekend in Lahore but, at least officially, it was postponed because of the tragic Lahore bombings. But Basant season is obviously here. For good and for bad.

Basant in Pakistan

Basant is a festival celebrating arrival of a spring season. People dress up in colorful clothes and fly Patang or gudday (Kites) of various shapes and sizes using a thoughtfully selected and prepared dor(Kite String). Some people fly kites just for fun. Others fly in serious competitions among various families, mohalas and emotions can run high.

Basant always brings childhood memories from Rawalpindi.

Kite flying Pakistan


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We use to prepare for festival by “dor sotna” (preparation of kite flying string). It starts from selecting the string first. Strings come in many varieties like number 5, 2, 12 Reech (bear), Camel brand, Air blade, 5 panda etc.

BASANT IN Pakistan

Art of “dor sotna” involves many secret ingredients like special glue, string, glass, “saresh”, color and many other secret stuff. Then “dor” is put on a “charakrhee”. After that we use to go and purchase kites of various types like gudday, Patang, Lakhnow Kut, Pari in various sizes and colors. gudday come in sizes like 2.5 Tawa, 3 Tawa, 6 Tawa whereas Patang sizes are known as Har Githhi, Panch Gitthi, 6 Githhi, 8 Githhi etc. Then dor is attached to kite using a process known as “Kanee Dalna”. It is an art itself.

Basant in Pakistan

On Basant day, we wear colorful clothes and climb to roofs and have Patang Bazee. Shouts of “Bo Kata”, “Aur Dheel Day”, “Nazar a Raha Hay Guda”, “Oyay Chor Maree Door ko”, “Khich Mar Na Yar”, “Neechay Say Neechay Say Paycha Laga” were norm. Due to very sharp “dor”, index and other fingers get very deep cuts. But those cuts were badges of honors and were proudly shown to people next day.

Basant is a fun filled festival. But every year many deaths occur due to kite string cutting somebody throat, electrocuting someone due to vicinity to overhead electric wires or falling from roof tops. So a great caution must be exercised so as not to lose human lives.

Credits:

1. Salman, who is a dear friend of mine from Pakistan, enlightened me on types of Guday, Patang and Dor.
2. Photos by Rehan Fazal at flickr.com

ATP’s Post on Basant from 2007:

Celebrating Basant – Idiot Stlye

27 responses to “Basant in Pakistan”

  1. malik says:

    salaam my friend.yaar mein rawalpindi pindi se hoon,mera naam sadat hai or aap ki site bohat achi laghi.mein bi patang baazi ka bohat shoq rakta hoon or ab to aap ko mahloom hi hai ke patang baazi pehle jaissi nahi rahi bar haal mujhe achi dor chahiye thi or patang bi kya aap meri help kar sakte ho?mera email adress hai (malik_sadat@hotmail.fr)yeh aap ki pics pe kohi doctor sahib hain yeh mahloom hota hai ke patang baazi ke bohat shokeen hain.thanks khuda hafeez

  2. ali says:

    Governor Punjab 14th and 15th march agree by celebrating Basant Festival

    Lahore: Governor Punjab Salmaan Taseer green Signal of basant festival Lahore 14th and 15th March after meet Kite-Flying Association (KFA) dedication with Pakistan People Party (PPP) Lahore Sadar Chaudhary Azhar at 8 club road in camp office. Salman Taseer said basant historical festival of Punjab specially Lahore festival. His continue the basant festival enjoyment of the peoples of the Lahore and Punjab.

  3. Ali says:

    I have heard basant in punjab is on this weekend as it was in the news at around 1 am yesterday so according to the news basant is on 15-March-2009

  4. Hammad says:

    Dear Colleagues,

    Let’s not guage every aspect from the religious angle —- our religion is far more bigger than this unnecessary debate !!!

    The society is getting bifurcated on the basis of rich and poor , basant being one of the only few festivals where this society bifurcation was bridged out, every one had a chance to enjoy but hats off to our religious brothers and sisters we are again being deprived of these festivals only and only on the basis of the declaration of basant being UNISLAMIC — come on basant has nothing to do with religion and religions has nothing to do with basant

  5. ali says:

    yarr what about basant of 2009 is it possible can any friend tell me i wanna to come pakistan ……………
    such a great festival

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