ISLAMABAD: A 3-day traditional food festival kicked off at National Institute of Folk and Traditional Heritage (Lok Virsa) on Saturday. The festival is aimed at showcasing cuisines of all 4 provinces as well as Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Principle Information Officer Mian Jahangir Iqbal inaugurated the festival.

Traditional food outlets from all over the country have established their stalls. Visitors got to taste a variety of delicacies including Shikarpuri Achar (pickle), falooda from Gujranwala, Aab Gosht and Hareesa from Kashmir, Rosh Peshawari, Pulao, Chapli Kebab and Peshawari Qehwa from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Sajji from Balochistan, Marzan from Gilgit-Baltistan, Sindhi biryani, Kunna Tawwa fish from Sindh and haleem from Karachi. Some stallholders brought cooked food but some made it on the spot.

Besides the food stalls, folk dance and regional musical nights are also being arranged to entertain the audience in which folk artists and musicians from across the country will perform to mesmerize the audience at the national platform of Lok Virsa.

Speaking to media on the occasion, Executive Director Lok Virsa Shahera Shahid said that the event has been planned to celebrate spring as it was Lok Virsa’s tradition to hold annual ‘Lok Mela’ in the month of April that was shifted to October and November keeping in view the desire of people to have a spring festivity.

Shahera Shahid said that besides inviting food experts from all provinces including Kashmir, various women chefs’ experts of traditional cuisines will also make food for the visitors on the occasion so that everyone can have representation in the food festival.

This provides an opportunity to build capacity of traditional food makers and also introduces masses to our regional cuisines, the ED Lok Virsa added.