Desert sport: May the best camel win

Rohi Raja wrangles top spot in camel wrestling festival in Rajanpur.

Express January 09, 2012


A camel wrestling festival was held in Rajanpur’s Umer Kot area on Sunday.

According to eyewitnesses hundreds of local residents attended a camel wrestling festival in Rajanpur on Sunday afternoon. Dozens of camels competed in a series of events including camel dance and wrestling.

“I have been training my animals for over six years. The camels are made to fight every few days to prepare for this event. I am extremely proud to have won the first prize in this competition,” said first position winning camel Rohi Raja’s owner Sajad Mazari. The event was organised in tehsil Rojhan where camels from across the country were featured in wrestling competitions, beauty competitions as well as dancing events. “This event is one of the highlights of the season. We have been featuring camel wrestling here for the past five years and we always have a huge turn out because people really enjoy all the events,” said one of the tehsil municipal administration (TMA) coordinators Sabir Muneeb. “There are also food stalls and stalls for clothing items at the festival,” he added.

Local landlord Musharraf Mazari organised the event and said that he was proud of the effort local workers had put in to make the event a success. “We didn’t have too much time to organise everything but I am glad that so many people got involved and we had a pretty large turn out,” he added.  MPA Atif Mazari was the chief guest for the occasion and told reporters that he especially enjoyed the camel wrestling events and also presented cash prizes to the owners of winning animals.

Hundreds of people turned up in Rajanpur to watch the wrestling.

“Over 100 camels were featured in the wrestling competitions and the animals were brought in from all over the country,” said camel breeder Bashir. “I personally featured 11 of my own camels in the matches and one of my animals won a prize,” he told reporters.

Camels from Sindh, Ghotki, Jacobabad, RYK, Sadiqabad, Bahawalpur, Jalalpur, Alipur and Dera Ghazi Khan were featured in the event and local residents said that they really enjoyed the matches. “This is a unique event because even though we do get to see camel dances, camel wrestling isn’t common,” said spectator Anwar Khan.

Rojhan’s Sajad Mazari’s camel ‘Raja’ stood first overall in the event, Iqbal Khor’s camel ‘Dhaman’ came second while Altaf Shah’s camel ‘Shehzada’ stood third.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 10th, 2012.

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Wendy Jane Forster | 8 years ago | Reply | Recommend

Please ban this barbaric spectacle. Decent people would never want to be seen supporting such an event. It belongs in the history books.

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