An Indian Army soldier passed away after his throat was slit by the banned ‘Chinese’ manja dangling from a kite stuck on an electric post in Hyderabad on Saturday, January 13. Kagithala Koteswar Reddy (30), an Army Naik, was riding a two-wheeler when the ‘Chinese’ manja – a coarse nylon glass-coated string used to fly kites — slit his throat and killed him, at the Indira Reddy flyover near Langar Houz on the evening of January 13.
Koteswar Reddy was admitted to a hospital but succumbed to injuries. The police have registered a case under Section 304 (II) (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The post-mortem was conducted at Osmania General Hospital, and Langer House police said that kite string was found to be the cause of death.
The soldier was a native of Pedda Valteru in Vishakapatnam district of Andhra Pradesh. He had been working as a driver at a Military Hospital in Hyderabad, and was residing at Bapu Nagar in Langar Houz with his wife.
The incident highlighted how the use of manja or glass-coated nylon/synthetic thread for kite flying is continuing unabated despite a ban by authorities. The Telangana Forest Department has taken measures to implement a ban on the use of manja in kite-flying during Sankranti, the harvest festival celebrated in several states in India.
The state government issued orders in 2016 imposing a total ban on manja to save birds and ensure its citizens' safety. The Environment, Forests, and Science and Technology department had issued orders imposing a ban on procuring, stocking, selling and use of manja.