NCA students bring excitement of Olympics to Pakistan


Talented Pakistani art students of National College of Arts (NCA), Rawalpindi Campus, helped spread the excitement of the London 2012 Games onto the roads of Rawalpindi by painting one of their buses using traditional Pakistani ‘truck art’ to celebrate the Olympics and the connections between UK and Pakistan. The British High Commission in Islamabad and the National College of Arts (NCA) Rawalpindi jointly organised the project to celebrate the diverse and interlinking cultures of Pakistan and the UK.
The event helps highlight the London 2012 cultural Olympiad which will take place alongside the landmark sporting event. The London 2012 cultural Olympiad is the largest cultural celebration in the history of the modern Olympic and Paralympic Movements. The culmination of the cultural Olympiad is the London 2012 festival, providing over 10 million chances to see free world-class events throughout the UK. London 2012 is the first Olympics to offer an international sporting legacy, connecting over 12 million young people with sports in 20 countries through the International Inspiration Programme.
Thousands of young people in Pakistan have been inspired to take part in sports and physical education in the past year, soon after the British Council launched the programme in the country. Pakistan is the 17th country in the world to join this programme and has committed to reach over 1 million Pakistani children in two years. On the occasion, British High Commissioner Adam Thomson said: “From the ornate horse-drawn carriages of the Raj to the pioneering craftsmanship featured on the Kohistan Bus Company’s fleet in the 1920s, Pakistan has a long-established tradition of decorating vehicles.
The British High Commission is using this centuries old tradition to bring the 2012 London Games to the streets of Pakistan. “I congratulate the students of National College of Arts and the truck artist who supported them on blending the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and this colourful Pakistani tradition, with such creativity and visual impact. The year of 2012 is an exciting year for the UK. We have been working hard behind the scenes to make this a magnificent year for everyone. The Olympics and Paralympics means the spotlight of the world will be on the UK – what a great time to show how dynamic and culturally diverse we are. Leading artists from all over the world, including Pakistan, are coming together this summer in the UK’s biggest ever nationwide arts festival – a chance for everyone to get into the spirit of London 2012 through dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, film and digital innovation.”
Khalid Ibrahim, Coordinator of National College of Arts (NCA), Rawalpindi Campus said: “Here in Pakistan, the brightly coloured trucks and buses are customised to show off where the vehicle and driver are from, or to pay homage to a famous movie star or a well-known military leader. Some trucks may be adorned with quotes from movies or verses. We have adopted this tradition to express some thoughts and links that come to one’s mind when we think of the UK and its connections with Pakistan.”
As hosts of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the UK sponsored the traditional Olympic Truce Resolution at the United Nations in October last year 2010. The resolution is entitled “Building a peaceful and better world through sports and the Olympic ideal” and gained the world record number of co-sponsors with all 193 UN member states. The UK will be working with Pakistan on the UN Security Council in support of this resolution calling for a global six-week truce during next summer’s Olympic Games.
The British High Commission in Pakistan is also running an exciting project on its website, Facebook and Twitter pages entitled ‘Celebrating Connections.’ The project aims to highlight some fascinating stories about the strong links between the UK and Pakistan, in terms of people, trade, culture, education and development that form our unbreakable partnership.