Dragon Boat Race kicks off in Pokhara
The Nepal-China Friendship Dragon Boat Festival has kicked off here amid a grand ceremony.
Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, Sudan Kirati inaugurated the Festival jointly organized by the Embassy of China in Nepal, the Pokhara Metropolitan City and the Nepal Tourism Board (NTB).
Four teams each from China and Nepal are participating in the Boat Race competition claimed to be the first of its kind in South Asia. One hundred and sixty people from all seven provinces of Nepal and those from China are participating in the competition.
The Sichuan Dragon Boat Team, Yuan Boat Team, SG Dragon Boat Team of Singapore, the China-Nepal Friendship Dragon Boat Team Pokhara, NARA Dragon Boat Team Nepal, NRESA Boat Team Nepal, Phewa Dragon Connect Team Nepal and Pokhara Metropolis Dragon Boat Team Nepal are vying in the boat race contest organized in the Phewa Lake.
Eight boat race events would be held as part of the competition, including 200 metres on the first day and 500 metres on the second day. The boats to be used in the competition have been brought from China. The paraphernalia for the boat race contest were also brought from China through Kerung transit point.
The festival is being organized with the aim of attracting Chinese tourists to Nepal while strengthening the cultural and people-to-people relations between the two countries.
The winning team will bag cash award of Rs 2 million, medal and certificates. A team of 60 people including deputy mayor of Lingji City of China arrived here on Wednesday in a chartered flight from China.
The NTB, Chinese Embassy officials and Pokhara Metropolitan City had on May 4 signed a memorandum of understanding for organizing the boat race festival.
Alongside the boat races, the festival also features cultural performances and food exhibitions representing both countries. China has previously organized similar events in over 50 countries, and this competition has also been included in the Asian Games. The organizers aim to make this an annual event in Pokhara, promoting cultural exchange and harmony.