News Date:Friday, 27 April 2018
The fourth edition of the pearl diving competition for children (Al Meena) began at Katara beach today (Thursday) afternoon.
Seven teams comprising a total of 117 children aged 10 to 14 years are participating in the competition.
This traditional event exclusively for children adds to Katara's Seventh Senyar Festival which concluded recently.
Before starting their voyage to the sea in traditional boats, the children were briefed about the rules and regulations of the contest as well as the traditions related to pearl diving. As per the rules, the contestants may dive in a maximum depth of one-and-a-half meters in the sea.
Mubarak Al Hajri, head of the organizing committee also gave them tips on safety procedures related to pearl diving and advised them to perform Islamic rituals like the five-time prayers during the event.
The children will spend two days and nights in the sea and return by Saturday noon after completing the competition. A closing ceremony (Ghaffal) will take place at Katara beach later on Saturday during which the winners will be announced.
A large number of people, especially families are expected to attend the closing ceremony.
Al Hajri said that all the children were well trained for the competition and had shown great interest and enthusiasm.
He said the objective of the competition was to keep children acquainted with the Qatari marine traditions and give them a first-hand experience of life in the sea.
Pearl diving and fishing competitions for elders were held as part of Katara's Seventh Senyar Festival which concluded recently. The Festival also featured a fishing competition for children.