Photo by Rahat Dar
ahoris are all set to celebrate Pakistan’s 75th independence anniversary the way only they know how. In recent years, the Covid pandemic had put a damper on the celebrations around the auspicious occasion and forced many an enthusiast to stay indoors. This year, finally, streets and markets are teeming with stalls offering flags and badges and the buyers seem thrilled about Independence Day shopping. The tradition to decorate homes, schools, workplaces and official buildings holds a special place in the hearts of many. Many children look forward to the month of August to shop for their azaadi day decor and outfits. Getting a fresh big flag, and a T-shirt with a slogan is as exciting for some as getting new clothes for Eid or Easter.
In many villages and Old City mohallas, people decorate whole streets with buntings. Watching children pasting small paper flags or using staples can be fun even for adults. This year there are hundreds of stalls across the city with large flags as well as buntings, bracelets, shirts, caps, headbands and bangles. Many street vendors have suspended their usual businesses to take up Independence Day ventures. Bikes and cars are also being prepared for parades of various lengths and durations.