PETA also said that the manja causes blackouts, electrocutes kite-flyers and is a non-biodegradable environmental hazard.

Ban the killer kite-flying thread manja PETA asks NGTPhoto by Parin309/Wikimedia Commons
news Animal welfare Wednesday, August 10, 2016 - 15:37

People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India has appealed to the National Green Tribunal to ban ‘manja’ or the thread used to fly kites citing its dangers to birds and human lives.

PETA filed a petition on Tuesday for imposing a nationwide ban on kite-flying thread which is often coated with glass, metal or other sharp objects. Citing incidents where people had died after being cut by the manja, PETA added that the threads were a hazard to birds as well.

“A bird rescuer in Ahmedabad estimates that 2,000 birds – including pigeons and endangered species such as vultures – are injured every year during the city's Uttarayan festival, and 500 of them die from their injuries. According to estimates, more than 300 birds were injured and over 100 died because of manja during Makar Sankranti in Hyderabad in 2015,” PETA said in a press release.

Apart from posing a death risk, the press release also mentioned how manja causes blackouts and electrocutes kite-flyers. Made of non-biodegradable materials like nylon, the thread ends up choking drains, sewers and natural waterways too, PETA said.

"Manja is a menace to public safety, posing a life-threatening risk to humans and birds alike", said PETA India Government Affairs Liaison Nikunj Sharma, adding that banning manja would make kite-flying enjoyable as well as safe for everyone.

So far, the high courts of Rajasthan, Allahabad, Jammu & Kashmir have banned manja’s use. Other administrations like Amritsar, Chennai, Karnataka, Telangana among others have also taken steps to limit the sale and production of the thread.

Manja deaths:

In September 2015, a  5-year-old boy who was riding along with his parents on his father’s motorcycle died after he was cut by a manja thread.

In 2014, according to media reports, a total of 900 birds were injured in the festivities of the three-day kite flying celebration of Makar Sankranti in Jaipur and 100 birds injured in Hyderabad.

Become a TNM Member for just Rs 999!
You can also support us with a one-time payment.