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Pakistan: Ban on Basant to be lifted

The Pakistani province of Punjab will be celebrating Basant in the second week of February next year, as the Punjab government here has given permission to celebrate the festival.

The festival was banned by the Supreme Court in 2005.

"This historical cultural festival of Lahore will be revived, and InshaAllah we will celebrate Basant in the second week of February," The News International quoted Punjab's Minister for Information and Culture Fayyazul Hassan Chohan as saying.

The ban was imposed after citizens lost their lives across the province due to recurring mishaps during the festival including the sharp strings which slit the throats of the victims, the death of civilians due to celebratory gunshots being fired and fatal falls from rooftops.

The festivities will be strictly monitored to prevent the mishaps from occurring when the festival is revived next year.