LEH: A two-day Balti Literary and Cultural Festival ‘Spang-gang’ organised jointly by J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages Leh and Kargil concluded on Monday at Turtuk in Nubra Valley.
Spang-gang Festival, a first of its kind, organised in the border area of Turtuk was an endeavour to revive and promote Balti culture besides promoting the area for tourism. Artists from Culture Academy Leh and Kargil performed a number of mesmerising programme. Mehfil-e-Mushaira, traditional horse polo match, famous Turtuk sword dance, Balti folk song and dance and popular Shondol dance were also part of the festival.
The festival was inaugurated by Executive Councillor for Minority Affairs, Animal and Sheep Husbandry and Cooperatives, LAHDC, Leh Mumtaz Hussian. He said that it has become a great challenge to preserve and promote the culture and tradition in today’s fast changing time and hoped that such cultural festival will help preserve Balti culture and folk traditions. He informed that under PMDP scheme Rs 10 crore have been sanctioned to develop tourism infrastructure in Turtuk region.
Expressing his gratitude to Culture Academy for making it possible for Baltis from both Leh and Kargil Districts to showcase their rich cultural heritage on a common platform, Councillor Turtuk Ghulam Mehdi hoped that this festival also would help improve lifestyles of the people by attracting more tourists in the region which was opened for tourism only from 2010.
Culture Academy Leh’s Special Officer for Culture, Tsewang Paljor said that festival has been organised to promote and preserve Balti culture as Balti of Ladakh has unique culture and tradition while Culture Academy Special Officer from Kargil Nazir Hussian said that academy has made an effort to provide common platform to Leh and Kargil Baltis to promote their rich culture.
Area Nambardar Abdul Mazjid said that the region located on the India Pakistan border was opened to tourism in 2010 and since then the tourism is growing in the region and the festival will boost the tourist inflow to the region.
SDM Nubra Sonam Nurboo, SDM Kharu Ghulam Muhammad, SHO Nubra Nissar Hussain, prominent citizens, writers, poets, artists, foreign and domestic tourists besides a large number of cultural and literary enthusiasts thronged the premises of Higher Secondary School Turtuk to witness the festival.