Soundly rejecting the efforts of Pakistan to create a false narrative around the 1st Anniversary of Abrogation of Article 370 in J&K, Kashmiris today celebrated the event by holding the Bangus Awaam Mela Handwara with great fanfare.
The Annual Festival saw the participation of hundreds of Gujjars, Bakarwals and other Kashmiri sightseers from Kupwara, Tangdhar and Handwara. The Mela was conducted over two days commencing on 3rd August with the grand finale on 4th August, statement reads.
The first day saw the conduct of Village Games which saw competitions like Horse Racing, Sheep Shepherding Challenge, Tugs of War and Wood Chopping Competitions between the Gujjar Bakerwal Community from various Bhaiks who inhabit the beautiful meadows during the summer months.
On the request of the community members, a free Veterinary and Medical Camp was also organized by the local Rashtriya Rifles unit over the two days of the festival. The Veterinary and Medical Camp was organized with an aim to provide basic health care facilities alongwith medicines to the locals who are residing in the remote region of Bangus valley. A total of 679 patients incl 49 children were given treatment, advice and free medicines by the doctors. The veterinary camp provided medical aid to 135 livestock in addition to surgical assistance to wounded.
On the second day of the festival, the audience enjoyed Folk songs by the gujjar community, patriotic songs by the local children, dances and a Karate Display by the Handwara Kudo Association in addition to the finals of the village games. The event culminated by a rousing participation in the recitation of the National Anthem and a vote of thanks by the Community elders to the Army for its support.