The Kalash or the Kalasha are the only pagan minority residing in the Chitral district of the province of Khyber, Pakistan. The Kalashas live in three valleys of Chitral namely, Rumbur, Brumbret and Birir. The Rumbur and Brumbret form a single culture due to their very similar cultural practices, while Birir being the most traditional one forms a separate culture. The number of kalash has decreased so much so that only around 4000 people are residing in the valleys. The Kalashas are polytheistic and according to a renowned linguist Richard strand, is of the view that the people of Kalash practice an ancient form of Hinduism which gradually developed locally and got influenced by the neighboring areas of pre Islamic Nuristan.
Kalash community of Chitral celebrated its annual two-day colorful Kalash Phool Festival with traditional zeal and fervor in Islamabad.
Phool festival is one of the four festivals celebrated every year by the community. The festival marks reaping of grapes & walnuts harvests.
People of the community adorn their heads with flower, singing songs in the local language and perform traditional dances throughout the two-day festival.
Tourists from across the country flock to the region to celebrate the Festival. Organizing such kinds of festival aimed at to attract more tourists to the scenic valley as tourism is the only source of income for most of population of Chitral.
Tourists from China, USA, Scotland, UK and other countries also participated in the festival.
Read More: Who is behind Hazara’s Killing?