Once again, the sky of Saidepet has been taken over by the kites, despite the activity being banned by the Police after a slew of accidents that involved the maanja thread used for it. Since the nation has gone into lockdown, the range of kite some made in manufacturing units and others at home are being flown at the sky during the evenings. Some are using newspaper or old magazines to make the kites.
But most of the people are unaware of the activity being banned in Chennai. Once considered a hub for the Kites, the activity vanished after Police strictly enforced the ban on Saidepet. Police even chased the violators two years ago to nab them. In Korrukupet last November, a three-year-old boy lost his life after the glass-coated thread known as maanja thread in the local language used to fly the kit slit his throat that was traveling with his parents in R.K.Nagar. The parents rushed the child to the Government Stanley hospital, but the child lost its life even before they reached the hospital.
In August 2019 at Tambaram, another three and half-year-old boy sustained injuries and neurosurgeon at government hospital also sustained injuries at ICF in 2018 because of a stray maanja thread.
AVS Marimuthu co-convenor of the North Chennai People Rights Federation stated that the maanja thread used for flying kites could prove fatal to others. Since he was also a victim, his eyebrow got cut due to maanja when he was riding a two-wheeler around twenty years ago. He also added people on the street are more vulnerable when kites are flown in open spaces, especially in the playgrounds.
The City police promulgated a magisterial order in 2015 which banned the use of maanja or similar threads. Under section 71 of the Police Chennai act, flying kites has been proscribed. Adyar Deputy Commissioner Pakalvana has stated the one who was flying kites will be booked, but so far, they haven’t received any complaints. But they will initiate action to nab the violators.