CHITRAL: British High Commissioner to Pakistan Thomas Drew CMG visited Chitral district’s Laspur valley bordering Gilgit-Baltistan and interacted with the local community about the development projects being carried out by international organisations, including the Aga Khan Development Network and World Wildlife Fund.

The high commissioner drove from the helipad to the women’s vocational training centre, where he showed interest in dresses and decoration pieces made by trainees.

Trainee Shagufta Hussain told him that the centre established by the WWF had enrolled 60 women for a training programme spanning more than one year to enable them for self-employment and thus, helping alleviate poverty in the area.

She said the local women had a traditional role in generating household income and shared the responsibility of their male partners to make cloth and raise livestock and poultry.

The high commissioner was briefed in the local support organisation’s office about the other WWF activities, including cattle vaccination and establishment of corrals in Shandur pasture to protect grazing animals from predators.

He also learned about the construction of hydropower stations inlocal villages by the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme.

ROUSING WELCOME: The Chitral team, which won the Shandur Polo Festival lately, was given a rousing welcome by polo fans in Booni town here on Wednesday.

Led by skipper Shahzada Sikandarul Mulk, the team reached the town carrying the trophy.

Thousands of people from different parts of Upper Chitral, especially Mulkhow, Kosht, Oveer, Terich, Torkhow and Reshun, gathered there to welcome the Chitral team, which had won the festival against GB team for sixth consecutive time.

They showered rose petals on them, while youths danced to the drumbeats.

Deputy commissioner of Upper Chitral Shah Saud welcomed the team at Booni Chowk and appreciated its performance in the festival.

Earlier, the team got a rousing welcome in Mastuj town as well.

The team will reach Chitral in three days after staying in different villages to amuse polo fans.

Published in Dawn, July 25th, 2019