Source of Pride
Your story on the Shandur Polo ground in Pakistan, the world’s highest polo ground, was very interesting. Having travelled extensively in the northern regions of Pakistan I have had the chance to visit the area and interact with the people there. Shandur is a source of pride for Pakistan and draws international tourists and avid polo players every year as part of the tournament. While the rest of the world raves about Pakistan’s natural beauty, it is a shame that our own government belittles it and fails to preserve not only Pakistan’s natural geography but also its rich, cultural traditions. International polo matches feature players from urban Pakistani centers while those who play the sport in Shandur with natural passion, vigor and enthusiasm, understanding the real rules of the game, are left in the dark. Polo, also called the “Sport of the Kings,” is a very prestigious and competitive sport played on horseback, which requires rigorous training and commitment. Instead of promoting the game, the annual tournament and Shandur, Pakistan chooses instead to remain mum about it. Few Pakistanis are aware of the sport or the area. The Shandur Polo Tournament is a matter of pride for Pakistan and must be elevated to that stature rather than be diminished in the eyes of its people.
Samina Khan Islamabad, Pakistan