Kite enthusiasts flout ban ahead of Basant

Kite-fliers openly use chemical-laced strings and metal wires

Our Correspondent February 04, 2023


With spring just around the corner and Basant preparations in full swing, the controversial sport of kite flying has rapidly gained traction in the garrison city, bringing with it the risk of harm to lives and vital installations.

Kite enthusiasts can be seen on the rooftops of buildings enjoying their pursuit despite a ban.

The chemical-laced twine and extremely thin metal wires used by some kite fliers have killed and injured many people in the past, forcing the government to impose a ban on the traditional sport completely.

Despite the continuous presence of police around the city, the skies are covered with kites of every colour and size, posing serious questions about the execution of the plan devised by the district police to curb the traditional sport.

Kite flying associations of the city have already announced celebrating Basant Night and Basant in Rawalpindi Cantt areas on February 16 and 17 respectively while in metropolitan areas, the events will be held on February 23 and 24.

According to sources, kite sellers have started selling banned kite-flying items online to avoid arrests.

This practice has resulted in a spike in the prices of kites and strings. A small-size kite is being sold at Rs50, a medium-sized one at Rs100, while a good quality kite costs Rs200. Similarly, the price of strings ranges from Rs1,000 to Rs3,000.

Meanwhile, kite makers have prepared white kites for the Basant Night and have kept the stock in-house. They only sell to customers of either their acquaintance or to those recommended by trusted ones.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 4th, 2023.


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