ISLAMABAD: The 9th Pakistan Mountain Festival concluded with distribution of awards in the name of five living legends from the mountains of Pakistan in Islamabad on Saturday.
The concluding ceremony of the festival was organised with the support of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), WaterAid and Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF) at the Comsats University Islamabad campus to mark the International Mountains Day.
Nepal’s Ambassador Sewa Lamsal and Australian Deputy High Commissioner Breck Batley were the guests of honour who distributed the awards among the winners.
Briefing about the awards, organiser of the event Munir Ahmed said at least five of the living legends would feel happy and satisfied that someone launched awards after their names in their lives.
Agostino Da Polenza Mountain Conservation Award is aimed at recognising and appreciating the services of the Italian alpinist that was supported by his government and other international partners in Gilgit-Baltistan through his development organisations for more than four decades. Conservationist Ashiq Ahmad Khan was honoured with this award.
Shoaib Sultan Khan Community Development Award is to celebrate the services of the first rural development guru in the mountain region. Syed Yahya Shah and Jan Alam were the recipients of this award for their services of more than three decades in community development.
Ustad Jan Ali Jan Mountain Music Award was conferred upon Abdul Ghafoor Chillasi (Gilgit) and Mansoor Ali Shabab (Chitral), both are extremely popular and well-respected voices promoting the indigenous music with all dedication.
Nazir Sabir is a globally known and is a well-respected name in the field of mountaineering. The first Nazir Sabir Mountaineering Award was conferred upon late Tsuneo Miyamori who climbed the unclimbed Booni Zom in 1962. He later started developing mountaineering route maps of Karakoram and Hindu Kush ranges in Pakistan which were published in 1979. He kept on improving the maps till his death.
Ashraf Aman was the first Pakistani porter to climb K2 in 1977. Having snow-bite on his foot led him to lose his fingers and he could not continue his mountaineering. Since then, he started promoting adventure tourism and making pathways for mountain tourism.
The first Ashraf Aman Adventure Tourism Award was given away to Aftabur Rehman Rana who had promoted sustainable mountain tourism over the last 35 years through his action plans and policy frameworks.
Ustad Jan Ali Jan is a 72-year-old singer, musician, poet having the expertise in playing different music instruments. He is well-known as the father of hareeps, the symphonies and compositions in the local languages. He has inspired everyone in the realm of mountain music.