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Gilgit-Baltistan Boycotts Shandur Polo Festival For The Third Time Since 2011

The Government of Gilgit-Baltistan has decided to withdraw its participation in Shandur Polo Festival 2016. This is the third time G-B Government has boycotted the world famous polo festival since. Gilgit-Baltistan did not participate in the event last year as well.

Imran Ahmed Hunzai

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Shandur Polo Festival 2016

The Government of Gilgit-Baltistan has decided to withdraw its participation in Shandur Polo Festival 2016. This is the third time G-B Government has boycotted the world-famous polo festival. Gilgit-Baltistan did not participate in the event last year as well.

The decision came after the governments of Gilgit-Baltistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa failed to build a consensus to organize the event jointly. According to Fida Khan, who represented Gilgit-Baltistan Government, KPK is trying to create a monopoly in the sport which is why arranging the event jointly could not be possible.

Talking to media in Islamabad, the lawmaker said:

“KP administration is deliberately escalating tension by illegally occupying the territory,”

he added:

 “The GB government had decided to boycott the event when Chitral administration refused to host the event on equal basis.”

Earlier,  G-B lawmaker Barkat Jamil, who is also the parliamentary secretary on tourism, had announced that Gilgit-Baltistan will participate in the event only if it has stakes in the festival.

Shandur Polo Festival

A flyer used by KPK Government to promote the festival on social media.

Shandur Polo Festival - Chitral vs Gilgit

Another flyer used by KPK Government to promote the festival on social media.

The Shandur dispute goes unresolved for decades leading to indifference between the governments of Gilgit-Baltistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Lack of interest by federal government to help resolve the issue is creating hurdles in promotion of tourism and the game of polo itself. The dispute has also led to deployment of armed forces by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government in Shandur which G-B thinks is illegal.

Talking to GBee, Shahid Raza, who has been traveling from Lahore to attend the event regularly since early 2000 said:

“It is quite unfortunate that Gilgit and Chitral are not being able to resolve the Shandur dispute. The federal government should step forward and take actions to resolve it. There should be no more bad politics and backdoor diplomacy.”

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will organize the event on 22th, 23rd, and 24th of July this year.

The Government of Gilgit-Baltistan is yet to announce a date for their version of the Shandur Polo Festival.

There will be no Chitral vs Gilgit matches which is the main attraction of the entire event.

Imran Hunzai is a Digital Media Consultant and activist based in Islamabad, Pakistan. When free, he likes to travel, do photography and play Rabab. He also runs a HONY inspired blog called Humans of Hunza. Follow him of Twitter @ihunzai.

Boyses

MMA Fighter from Gilgit-Baltistan to face his Afghani opponent at SLFC

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Shah Nawaz Mixed Martial Arts Pakistan at SLFC

MMA fighter Shah Nawaz is all set to face his Afghani opponent Abdul Wadood Matin at the Snow Leopard Fighting Championship (SLFC). The event is scheduled to be held in Kabul, Afghanistan, on 25th January 2019.

This is going to be the first major Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) championship for Shah Nawaz in the year 2019. Shah Nawaz belongs to the Hunza district in Gilgit-Baltistan and represents the Fight Fortress Islamabad.

Other prominent MMA fighters from Gilgit-Baltistan representing Fight Fortress Islamabad include Uloomi Karim Shaheen, Haider Farman, Anita Karim and Zeeshan Shah.

Shah Nawaz, who is originally from Hunza Valley, will travel to the neighboring country of Afghanistan with Ali Sultan, his coach and co-owner of The Fight Fortress Islamabad later this week.

SLFC - Pakistan vs Afghanistan

Player Comparison: Abdul Wadood Matin (Afghanistan) vs Shah Nawaz (Pakistan)

Shah Nawaz has won 2 out of 2 amateur matches. Both of the matches were held at PAK MMA ٖFighting Alliance. He is quite confident to add another win to his name.

He said while talking on social networking platform Facebook”I’ve been training hard for this championship. Abdul Wadood Matin is a good player and he is going to be a tough opponent.”

The matches of Snow Leopard Fighting Championship (SLFC) will be streamed live on Fight Night Afghanistan’s YoutTube Channel. The match will also be available for TV audience on TOLOTV (Yahsat 1A 52.5°E: 11785-H-27500-5/6 & ST-2 88°E: 10966-V-7300-3/4).

An embedded stream for viewers in Gilgit-Baltistan and rest of Pakistan will be available on GBee’s video section.

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Hunza

First ever Gojal Futsal Cup to kick off in Islamabad this December

Imran Ahmed Hunzai

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Gojal Futsal Cup Islamabad
GRISA

The first ever edition of Gojal Futsal Cup 2018 is all set to be played in Islamabad this December. Ghulkin Rawalpindi Islamabad Students Association (GRISA) is organizing the futsal tournament for the youth of Gojal Upper Hunza district residing the Rawalpindi and Islamabad.

GRISA has formally invited teams based in the twin cities coming from different villages of Gojal to participate in the tournament. So far a dozen teams have registered themselves.

Only teams from Gojal would be allowed to participate, at the same time, players from one village would not be allowed to play for another village.

GRISA team Rawalpidni

Dr. Sayeed Tajik, the man behind the event, told GBee that their organization is expecting up to 20 teams.

Gojal Futsal Cup Islamabad 2018 is being organized by Ghulkin Rawalpindi Islamabad Students Association (GRISA) in collaborating with Leisure Leagues Pakistan and Ghulkin Youth & Sports Organization (GYSO).

Gojal Futsal Cup Islamabad will be held at Ammar Shaheed Football Ground in sector G-10/3, Islamabad, on 1st and 2nd December 2018.

Gojal Futsal Cup 2018 Islamabad

Details of the event can be found on the Gojal Futsal Cup Islamabad official Facebook event page.

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