Garbed in colourful dresses with large traditional jewellery, school children from across the twin cities showcased their patriotism in full spirits on Wednesday.
Mostly from first to eighth grade, the students were invited to perform at PNCA auditorium to mark Pakistan Day, where they presented national songs, tableaus and a mime performance.
Keeping in mind the theme of the event, the stage was decked with green and white balloons and posters of Quaid-i-Azam and Allama Iqbal provided the backdrop.
The event began with a beautiful performance by students of Islamabad College for Boys G-6, who performed ‘Yeh Faisla Hai’, a song composed by one of their teachers Ali Abbas.
The song was followed by a series of tableaus, and skits by IMCG, Fatima Jinnah Women University (FJWU), Bright Land Public School, Al-Maktoom Special Education Centre and FG College for Girls.
Hadiqa Kiyani’s ‘Man di mauj’ was the choice song for IMCG, as the girls danced merrily to the song till a girl wearing a Pakistani flag [symbolising Pakistan] was hounded by dark-robed figures posing as unemployment, poverty and inflation.
On the other hand, traits such as education and development came and strengthened Pakistan. This was followed by a girl dressed as a soldier waving a large Pakistani flag as the national anthem played along.
As the audience stood up for the anthem, some boys could be seen saluting, while others sang out the anthem aloud.
Maria Kanwal, a special child, also received a round of applause as she sang ‘Dia jalaye rakhna hai’.
In addition to that, two boys enthralled the audience with a Pashto instrumental on rubab and tabla, to which some boys were seen mustering up the courage to go on stage for a dance.
The highlight of the event was a mime performance by FJWU students, which was somewhat along the same lines as IMCG’s performance.
However, the mime conveyed a much stronger message, with girls coming back and forth in eerie background music, showcasing a helpless Pakistan being buried in debt, terrorism and corruption. In the end, white-robed girls came on stage to save Pakistan.
The event came to an end with distribution of cups among the students by PNCA Director General Tauqir Nasir. He questioned if anyone knew why March 23 was really celebrated and asked the youngest child who had raised her hand to come on stage and explain.
He also urged the youth to reflect the characteristics stressed by the founders of the country.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 22nd, 2012.