Inclusive celebrations: Mohatta Palace’s Azaadi Mela welcomes all


A large number of people had gathered at Mohatta Palace Museum’s Azaadi Mela on Sunday as the entry fee had been waived. Among other fun activities, clowns entertained visitors. PHOTOS: AYESHA MIR/EXPRESS

A large number of people had gathered at Mohatta Palace Museum’s Azaadi Mela on Sunday as the entry fee had been waived. Among other fun activities, clowns entertained visitors. PHOTOS: AYESHA MIR/EXPRESS

KARACHI: Three clowns – Cheeka, Peeka and Reeka – brought smiles to everyone’s faces at Mohatta Palace on Sunday evening with their nonsensical actions and tomfoolery. The clowns were acting as brothers in a play that had no dialogue, using their facial expressions and gestures to bring joy to the viewers.

Mohatta Palace Museum held an ‘Azaadi Mela’ on Sunday from 12pm to 7pm to celebrate the day in a fun and educational manner. Children, accompanied by their families, thronged the festival, where, in the true spirit of Independence Day, entry was free of charge. The festival included games, crafts, music and dance, children’s books, competitions, performances and delicious food.

Museum director Nasreen Askari felt passionately about the fact that many people with privileged upbringings are hard-pressed to take an active role in the lives of others who lead different and impoverished lives. “This children’s carnival is a gift from Mohatta Palace to the people of Karachi to celebrate Independence Day and, in so doing, celebrate our skills, existence and commitment to our land,” she explained. She added that she was overwhelmed by the positive response at the carnival.

According to Askari, they decided to waive the entrance fee so that everyone gets a chance to come to Mohatta Palace Museum and enjoy the celebrations. She said that the museum can be very intimidating for residents of its neighbouring settlements such as those of Shireen Jinnah Colony or Neelam Colony. Most of those people are so poor they have never had the chance to run on a green lawn, she lamented.

The festival had several different corners – a play corner, book corner with an Oxford University Press bus, a food corner, music corner, performance corner and a film corner, in which Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy’s Teen Bahadur was screened.


Original news : http://tribune.com.pk/story/1162572/inclusive-celebrations-mohatta-palaces-azaadi-mela-welcomes/