The Need for Balance: Chitral’s Passion for Polo Versus Economic Engagement

District Chitral, located in the picturesque region of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, is renowned for its love of Free Style Polo. The district’s residents exhibit an extraordinary enthusiasm for the sport, eagerly gathering at the polo grounds to witness thrilling matches. However, a recent photograph of a young Pathan selling corn during a polo match has sparked a discussion on the priorities of the Chitrali people. This article aims to critique the lack of involvement in business activities among the locals, emphasizing the need for a balance between indulging in sports and actively participating in economic endeavors.

The Allure of Polo:

Polo has a long-standing tradition in Chitral, serving as a cultural cornerstone and source of immense pride for its residents. The game’s fast-paced nature, combined with the skill and bravery displayed by the players, captivates the hearts of the Chitrali people. Their dedication to the sport is admirable, as they spend hours watching matches, cheering for their favorite teams, and relishing the excitement that polo brings.

A Missed Opportunity for Economic Engagement:

While the Chitralis’ passion for polo is commendable, it is equally important to address the lack of active involvement in business activities. The photograph of the young Pathan selling corn during a polo match highlights an alarming trend – outsiders seizing economic opportunities that the locals are neglecting. This situation raises concerns about the economic potential of Chitral and the risk of losing out on benefits that could otherwise improve the living standards of its people.

Balancing Passion with Pragmatism:

There is a pressing need for the Chitrali people to strike a balance between their passion for sports and engagement in economic endeavors. While sports bring joy and cultural identity, it is vital to recognize the importance of financial stability and self-sufficiency. Actively participating in business activities, entrepreneurship, and exploring opportunities beyond the realm of sports will contribute to the growth and development of the district.

Harnessing Economic Potential:

Chitral is blessed with abundant natural resources, breathtaking landscapes, and a vibrant culture that can be leveraged to stimulate economic growth. Engaging in tourism, agriculture, and handicrafts could not only generate revenue but also preserve and promote the district’s rich heritage. By channeling their entrepreneurial spirit and exploring business opportunities, the Chitrali people can secure a prosperous future for themselves and their families.

Encouraging Entrepreneurship:

To foster a culture of entrepreneurship, it is crucial for the government, local authorities, and community leaders to take the lead in providing support and resources. Establishing vocational training centers, business development programs, and offering financial assistance would enable the Chitrali people to acquire the necessary skills and knowledge to excel in various industries.

Preserving Cultural Identity:

While emphasizing the need for economic engagement, it is essential to acknowledge the significance of preserving Chitral’s cultural identity. The promotion of sports, including polo, must continue, as it plays a vital role in connecting the people and showcasing the district’s unique heritage to the world. Striking a balance between cultural preservation and economic progress will ensure a sustainable and prosperous future for Chitral.


The Chitrali people’s enthusiasm for polo is commendable, highlighting their deep-rooted love for sports and their rich cultural heritage. However, the photograph of the young Pathan selling corn during a polo match serves as a reminder that active participation in business activities is essential for economic growth. Striking a balance between passion for sports and economic engagement is crucial to secure a prosperous future for Chitral. By harnessing their entrepreneurial potential and exploring diverse business opportunities, the Chitrali people can create a sustainable and vibrant economy that benefits them and future generations.

By: Muhammad Nayab
Photo Credit: Farhan Bashir


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Muhammad Nayab is a visionary leader in enterprise development and training with 15+ years of experience. As a serial entrepreneur, he has successfully led ventures in consulting, IT, and education. Nayab's passion lies in unlocking human potential, and he has trained over 4000 individuals in digital skills, leadership, communication, and conflict resolution. He is a trusted consultant to renowned organizations and the Founder/CEO of Qashqar Chitral. Muhammad Nayab is dedicated to empowering individuals and organizations, driving success, and making a lasting impact in the field of enterprise development and training.

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