Kicking against all odds, Football at 2000 metres

By: | Muhammad Ali Azlan |

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There is clearly no place like Gilgit Baltistan, with snow capped mountains, lush green forests, clear blue skies and starriest of nights, crystalline waters and serene natural beauty to knock one into a utopian dream of tranquility and everlasting peace, sometimes you may question yourself, am I dead? because this feels like heaven, haha.

Many wonders to behold and a lot of sights to be seen in one of the world’s most beautiful places but today we shift focus on a particular valley situated in Gilgit Baltistan, Hunza.

Hunza is situated in the extreme northern part of Pakistan, bordering with the Wakhan Corridor of Afghanistan and the Xinjiang region of China, Hunza was formerly a princely state bordering Xinjiang (autonomous region of China) to the northeast and Pamir to the northwest, which survived until 1974, when it was finally dissolved by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. The state bordered the Gilgit Agency to the south and the former princely state of Nagar to the east. The state capital was the town of Baltit (also known as Karimabad); another old settlement is Ganish Village which means ancient god “Ganesh village. Hunza was an independent principality for more than 900 years, until the British gained control of it and the neighbouring valley of Nagar between 1889 and 1892 through a military conquest.

With football madness reaching a fever pitch the showdown of the world’s biggest sporting spectacle is underway in Russia, The football World Cup 2018.

Pakistan football with its decadent sporting structure, lack of support, appreciation, focus and rampant corruption in governance as a whole has left the sport in tatters.

Raw talent is surplus but opportunities, few and far between, we have mastered the art of killing our own heroes and driving the youth away from healthy physical and mental activities to a life of crime, drugs, klashinakov’s and terrorism.

Despite all the adversity, Pakistani youth plays in possibly the highest altitude football grounds on earth, organizing a private football tournament league at staggering heights of 2000 meters in the tropical valley of Hunza.

People visit from far flung areas and flock to see impassioned performances of the participants cheering for their hometown heroes putting it all on the line to satiate their desire and play the biggest sport in the world.

Explaining objectives of the tournament, the organizers said that they plan to persuade the youth to avoid unhealthy social habits and concentrate on studies and sports, among other healthy activities, to be able to live successful lives. “Through the tournament we want to tell the people of Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan and the world that as human being we all are custodians of the resources of this earth and it is our duty to be prudent in our social life. We should live happily, celebrate successes and share our griefs, leading the world towards a happy future”, an official statement shared with the press said, explaining the tournament’s message.

 

“Just like the differences exhibited in the colourful uniforms the teams are wearing in this tournament, our differences as human beings can make us strong and can be a source of unity, rather than conflict. We should appreciate and accept the colours of the world and contribute positively towards promotion of respect and acceptance for pluralism”, the message further read.

 

 

 

The tournament has been organized by Gulmit Young Stars Club and Students Welfare Organization. With the sixth edition of the league about to get underway the locals are excited and the jubilation is palpable, the initiative is indeed commendable and a shining example of taking initiative and contributing positively towards the society.

To know more about the league visit their official social media portals mentioned below:

https://www.facebook.com/gulmitpremierleaguegpl/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/gulmitpremierleague/

 

 

The writer tweets: @Reb_ali_ous

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