NGT issues complete ban on 'Gattu Dor' on this Raksha Bandhan

Raksha Bandhan is on the threshold and the markets of Jammu are inundating with colors of colorful rakhi strings and the majestic kites.

The quadrilateral beauty is trending. After a full day of kite flying championship, the darker tan lines all over the face and the scars by manjha (kite flying thread) are seen as something to be proud of. With the air filled with "chal gayi aa", the kite fighters squinching up to the sky trying to obtain a desirable position in order to cut the opponent's kite and the streets filled with kite chasers there comes a menace that has caused some serious fatal incidents.

Ill Effects Of Gattu Dor

Festivals like Raksha Bandhan and Janamashtmi are a doorway to kite flying championship and people go to considerable lengths to ensure the survival of their kites on flight. Many people prefer the glass coated manjha that is gummed and sprinkled with glass powder while many opt for the gattu dor that is made up of nylon and has a high tensile strength whilst ignoring the irreparable havoc it wrecks.

‘Gattu dor' or the Chinese spool is not as sweet as its name.

Environmental havoc- Due to its high tensile strength, the birds that get clutched up in the tangles of this dor; in an attempt to save themselves, lose their lives. According to PETA, in Ahmedabad approximately 2000 birds undergo serious injuries due to this dor and a rough estimate of around 500 of them succumb to their injuries. This number has been growing ever since the unrestrained and rampant use of this dor.

Human life havoc- There have been many reportings of the incidence where two wheeler drivers have narrowly escaped slashing of their throat and some who were not lucky enough. This dor has caused severe amputations, deep cuts and scars and in many cases death of people. The loose dor that hangs from poles and trees get carried away to roads and causes such fatal accidents.

Electricity conduction- Yes, you read that right. This dor contains traces of metals and if it is moist, can conduct electricity and can cause amputation for it will turn you into a conductor of electricity.

Fly Carefully

  • Kite flying is an event to be cherished and thoroughly enjoyed. To make your kite flying safe, consider following precautions-
  • Don't fly kites near trees, electricity poles, roads, buildings etc.
  • Ditch the glass manjha and gattu dor whilst opting for cotton thread.
  • Properly apply sunscreen to the exposed part of your body and wear sun glasses.
  • If you find loosely suspended dor, collect all of it, wrap it in a piece of paper and dispose it off.
  • Wear gloves to avoid deep cuts to your hands and maintain a layer between you and infections.

Festivals are here to color the grey. The kites are ready to take their flight and roam the skies like paper sharks searching for their prey. Let's not taint but enjoy the real essence of festival. May every soaring kite elevate your happiness.

Ban on "Chinese Dor"

Recently, the use of 'Chinese' kite strings, made of nylon or any synthetic material which is non-biodegradable was banned with immediate effect by the National Green Tribunal on the grounds that it posed threat to life and the environment.

NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said that looking at the deep-rooted tradition of kite flying in our country which has become part of our various festivals, the ill-effects of Chinese manja had not only resulted in injuries to birds, animals and human beings, but number of fatal accidents have also increased in large number, and thus interference is called for by this tribunal.

The green panel directed all state governments to prohibit the "manufacture, sale, storage, purchase and use" of synthetic manja or nylon threads and all other synthetic strings used for flying kites.

All chief secretaries of states and Union Territories are directed to enforce prohibition on manufacture and use of synthetic manja/nylon thread for flying kites throughout the country.

And it has also been said that the state governments/UTs/Chief Secretaries/District Collectors are directed that in case of violation of any of the directions given in this judgment, appropriate steps be taken against the defaulters under the provision of Environment (Protection) Act, 1986; Prevention of Cruelty of Animal Act, 1960; Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972, the Indian Penal Code or any other provision of law.

The judgement came on a plea filed by animal rights body People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), Khalid Ashraf and others, contending that 'manja' posed a grave threat to humans and animals as every year a number of deaths are caused by it.

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