NEW DELHI: On 15th August when the citizens were celebrating 71st Independence Day, more than 500 birds lost their wings and close to 100 died due to injuries sustained by the metal and glass coated thread used in kite-flying.
The winged creatures suffered due to the dangerous Chinese strings cutting through the wings, bones and ribs of half a thousand birds in the skies. Injured birds are being treated in the Charity Birds Hospital situated in the premises of the Digambar Jain Temple at Chandni Chowk, opposite the historic Red Fort in the Walled City of Delhi.
Despite ban on the ‘maanjha’ strings by the National Green Tribunal (NGT), the enthusiasts keep repeating its use, leaving the flying creatures dead and injured. Although Chinese threads are not allowed to be sold in the market, shopkeepers are still selling it to make profit at the cost of killing birds.
The Charitable hospital at Chandni Chowk was filled with the birds struggling to fly due to their wings’ cut. Pigeons, crows, eagles and parrots were most in numbers. Embedded with stains of blood, the wounded birds were being treated by the veterinarian doctors in the emergency ward.
If the kite enthusiasts don’t manage to buy the maanjha from the market then they use home-made maanjha. Broken tubelight glasses, CFL bulb shards, mixture of wheat flour and some other metals are the key ingredients to make maanjha at home. The mixture of these items is used to polish and coat the soft thread with great maneuver. Within 24 hours, the cotton threads are turned into razor-sharp ‘maanjha’.
A Delhi Police constable Also Injured
One Delhi Police constable, Manoj Kumar, was also injured due to Chinese maanjha in the Kashmere Gate vicinity. He suffered injuries on his nose and upper eyes. He was admitted to the nearest primary hospital and later released.
The annual tradition of kite-flying causes a heavy toll in birds and people. Last year, three people died when the strings cut their throat. With immediate effect, coating of strings with glass was banned in the Capital. But it seems that the tradition has taken a huge toll of winged creatures who remain mute victims.