LAHORE – Punjab Government on Monday denied giving a go-ahead to celebrate the Basant festival in certain parts of the city in February 2017.
Reports about the approval of the Basant in Punjab surfaced on different news channels, leading many religious personalities, including Mufti Muneeb ur Rahman, to criticise the decision.
However, the Punjab Government later denied the news and said that If any such step was taken, that would have announced officially.
“Some news channels are reporting approval of Basant by Govt of Punjab, which is NOT CORRECT. V will announce it here if such a step is taken,” the official Twitter page tweeted.
Some news channels are reporting approval of Basant by Govt of Punjab, which is NOT CORRECT. V will announce it here if such a step is taken
— Govt Of The Punjab (@GovtOfPunjab) December 5, 2016
Earlier on Monday, it was reported that the Education Minister Rana Mashood said the ‘Safe Basant’ festival will be held in February. “The long awaited festival would entertain Lahorites at designated places in the provincial capital,” the minister was quoted as saying.
Earlier in August, Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif had constituted an eight-member committee, led by MPA Zaeem Qadri, for the revival of Basant in Lahore.
The Terms of References of the committee were to come up with well-considered proposals for the revival of Safe Basant, examine the proposal in the light of its touristic potential, and devise a workable code of conduct of regulations for the subject activity.
In 2005, the Supreme Court had banned the spring festival over a number of deaths caused by the use of sharp and glass coated strings.
Several petitions challenging the ban were dismissed by the court.