Mama Parsi students go around the world

Published: November 8, 2013
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Students of Mama Parsi Girl’s High School dressed up in the traditional attire of their designated countries. One of the students was dressed as a Brazilian woman (left) while another was dressed as a Thai fruit vendor (right). PHOTOS: ATHAR KHAN/ EXPRESS

Students of Mama Parsi Girl’s High School dressed up in the traditional attire of their designated countries. One of the students was dressed as a Brazilian woman (left) while another was dressed as a Thai fruit vendor (right). PHOTOS: ATHAR KHAN/ EXPRESS

KARACHI: The Mama Parsi Girl’s High School campus became a global village on Thursday, when its classrooms were converted into cultural manifestations of 18 different countries.

The event, which was the result of a four-month-long effort of around 700 students of the afternoon shift, marked the institution’s 95th anniversary.

As two grade-10 students, Kisa Fatima Jafri and Rabika Asif, guided the way from one pavilion to another, the journey was akin to a delightful experience of a world tour that Jules Verne perhaps would have described as ‘around the world in one go’. The informative material arranged for each country was almost encyclopaedic in nature and will be on display for the next three days.

Students of Mama Parsi Girl’s High School dressed up in the traditional attire of their designated countries. One of the students was dressed as a Brazilian woman (left) while another was dressed as a Thai fruit vendor (right). PHOTOS: ATHAR KHAN/ EXPRESS

Parvin Rabadi, the headmistress of the afternoon shift since 1991, stood proud as she explained the aim behind the exhibition. “By engaging in this extracurricular activity, our students have learned a lot of new things on diversity in culture, language and religion – facts that are usually missed out in the textbooks,” she told The Express Tribune.

At the entrance of the Indian exhibit, two grade-four students, clad in silk saris, greeted the guests with a polite ‘namaste’. Inside the classroom, several students, dressed in traditional Indian attire, performed dance sequences on Bollywood songs. Next to them was a dining table on which an assortment of Indian curries had been set in a traditional thali.

Students had also arranged a hand-pulled Kolkata rickshaw that was introduced in India during the early 20th century. A Banyan tree was on display, which is said to be the resting place for the Hindu God, Krishna. “Hindu women tie threads around its bark to pray for the sanctity of their husband’s lives and in order to get the same groom for several births to come,” explained Anjum Ahmed, an English teacher at the school.

Apart from original Indian outfits and jewellery on display, the culture and history of the neighbouring country was depicted at a myriad of sections, including monuments, festivals, mythology, film industry, history, politics and government.

In the adjacent pavilion, the Iranian culture was on display. Nasreen, one of the teachers, had brought a 125-year-old samavar, belonging to her great grandmother.  The metal container, used to heat and boil water to make tea, is well-suited to tea-drinking in a communal setting. The tea culture associated with Iran is maintained by expatriates around the world. An assortment of Iranian dishes was also on offer, including doogh – a drink made of yogurt, Shirazi salad and Chelo kebab.

Further on, a floor spread was set up for Aghd [Persian marriage], comprising several kinds of food and decorations, referred to as Sofreh Aghd, explained a fifth grader, Mariam Tanzeel Khan, who was dressed in a traditional white bridal dress.

In the midst of the tour, the guides, Kisa and Fatima, explained that people across the world shared a lot more common traits than differences. “We all share a common goal for a better world. To achieve this end, we can work together or supplement and appreciate each other’s efforts.”

The school’s principal, Furengeez Tampal, who has been associated with the institution for the past 23 years, believed that the 95-year-old institution had been successful in continuing its mission to impart holistic and affordable education to the Karachi’s girls.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 8th,2013.

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Reader Comments (13)

  • Mirza Ayub Baig
    Nov 8, 2013 - 12:54PM

    I was one of the lucky guy to visit and watch this exhibition, kids and the staff of Mama Parsi have done wonderful job, i spends there around more than a hour, every corner of every gallery was beautifully organized, they way kids and respected teachers arrange the event and entertain the visitor looks like some professional event managers organized the event.

    While on the main entrance i saw a big glob map of world this was the signal and i watched all the cultural products inside the galleries. Kids were standing at the stall wearing exactly same clothing (cultural wears) of the respective region/country.

    Many many congratulations to the Mamian’s team.

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  • Anon
    Nov 8, 2013 - 2:43PM

    The afternoon shift was ONLY responsible for Pakistan’s display. The rest of the 17 countries were displayed by the morning shift which was divided into several groups.

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  • Anon
    Nov 8, 2013 - 2:45PM

    The afternoon shift worked ONLY to display Pakistan, but the rest of the 17 countries were displayed by the morning shift which was divided into several sections.

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  • Sarah
    Nov 8, 2013 - 5:04PM

    Proud to be an Ex-Mamaian :) Recommend

  • Nov 8, 2013 - 9:44PM

    Hey Guyx I am a student From BVS Parsi High School we recently visited the exhibition of mama parsi school On Friday Could you Tell me the names of the countries Whose exibhitions were there, as i have to write a report on the exhibition.Thanks.

    Sincere regards
    Mubashir Bhania

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  • Eesha Arshad
    Nov 9, 2013 - 7:06PM

    Well being a mamaian I would really appreciate if you alter the statement “The event, which was the result of a four-month-long effort of around 700 students of the afternoon shift “,because the whole school worked hard for it, and the 700 girls of the afternoon shift had put in their efforts in the country ie. Pakistan only. In this way you are conveying the wrong message. Thanks.

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  • Zoya
    Nov 10, 2013 - 11:58PM

    Being a student of the morning shift I totally agree with what Eesha Arshad says because in this way all the credit is being given to the afternoon shift forgetting about the efforts of the efforts of the teachers and students of the morning shift.

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  • Zoya
    Nov 10, 2013 - 11:59PM

    Being a student of the morning shift I totally agree with what Eesha Arshad says because in this way all the credit is being given to the afternoon shift forgetting about the efforts of the efforts of the teachers and students of the morning shift.Recommend

  • Zoya
    Nov 11, 2013 - 12:14AM

    Being a student of the morning shift, I totally agree with what Eesha Arshad said. Because according to this article all the credit is being given to the afternoon shift completely forgetting the efforts of the students and teachers of morning shift .Recommend

  • Zoya
    Nov 11, 2013 - 12:22AM

    Being a student of the morning shift I totally agree with what Eesha Arshad said because in this way all the credit is being given to the afternoon shift completely forgetting the efforts of the students and staff of the morning shift.

    Recommend

  • Zoya
    Nov 11, 2013 - 12:22AM

    Being a student of the morning shift I totally agree with what Eesha Arshad said because in this way all the credit is being given to the afternoon shift completely forgetting the efforts of the students and staff of the morning shift.Recommend

  • Nisma
    Nov 11, 2013 - 8:05PM

    This was the best event i had ever participated!! i was a part of a team that had been assigned the duty to arranged and display the culture of Punjab province.I really enjoyed through this arrangements phase as well as on display days.After performing my duty the display I went to visit the other countries and surprised to see that other projects were so beautifully made and managed too. Hats of to Miss Tampal and all teachers for providing us the opportunity to prove and show our talent :) I hope the visitors also enjoyed.

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  • LS
    Nov 13, 2013 - 8:35PM

    Many creative ideas of the students were put down. Otherwise, students were eager to do even more than what was done.

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