It all started with a silly email which was sent on one fine morning in response to the cricket match invitation that HRD Coordination office wanted to organize. It is true that Islamabad in March is indeed gorgeous; cricket, a way of life and favorite pastime for enthusiasts, but in no way the game alone accentuates what Islamabad in March has to offer. Every year, in some parts of Middle East, Persia, and Central Asia spring is welcomed with the festivities of Nauroz in March; so we thought that why can’t this year March be greeted with some element of color, food, music with an aspect of few sporty activities all in the name of ‘Spring festival ‘.
The idea was thus floated through an email on the internal network of the Higher Education Commission (HEC). Thanks to Advisor HRD i.e. Dr. Riaz Qureshi who instantly approved the idea and to a few others who enthusiastically became a part of the whole concept and put their heart and soul in it in order to make it work; Mr. Waseem Hashmi, Ms. Nadia, Ms. Mahjabeen Cheema, Ms. Samra, Ms. Madiha Anwar Butt, Ms. Sara Hashmi, Ms. Shabnum and Mr. Ahsan just to name few.
HEC has no history of such events, so everything had to be started from the scratch. From decorations to entertaining activities, from food arrangements to sports activities organization, every aspect was carefully planned and meticulously worked out. Mind you, it was not easy. It was decided that 23rd March was an ideal date, as the day also had historical significance. The venue was HRD lawns, the invitees were the HEC officials and the time was in the evening.
The icing of the cake was the handmade decorations that hung on the trees, lawns and walls of the selected lawn. The day arrived and the curtain was raised; people came with their kids, gals and guys in colorful mode of dress brought color to the entire scene. Spring was indeed in the air!
A flower arrangement competition was organized, a sugar cane eating competition, acting competition for kids , a competition among couples (husbands and wives of course)regarding their ‘understanding’ through ebb and flow of their marriage. Those who were interested in sports activities kept themselves busy with cricket, table tennis and badminton. Delicious food was served in the later part of the evening. Altogether people had a swell of a time.
A critic would say that by no means spring festival could be attributed as a lavish or glamorous event. No offence against the critic. It is the participation of people who always make an event glamorous and worth remembering. We hoped to achieve that and in our limited resources we did it.
Our special thanks goes out to the Executive Director, HEC i.e. Dr. Sohail Naqvi and Advisor Quality Assurance i.e. Dr. Syed Mehmood Raza who took their time out and participated in the event.
Hope to see you next year! Adios J
Ms. Madiha Anwar Butt / Shaikh Muhammed Ali
Project Manager / Project Director
Higher Education Commission
Note: This article was first published on the Internet in June 2010.