After receiving a complaint from PETA India and following successful raids in the Sadar Bazar and Bara Hindu Rao kite markets, Delhi police conducted more raids and seized hundreds of kilograms of manja (sharp kite-flying string often made of cotton thread laced with glass, metal, or other sharp materials) from various shops in the Madhu Vihar Market in East Delhi. They registered offences against sellers under Section 5 of the Environment Protection Act (EPA), 1986, for violation of the 10 January 2017 Delhi Gazette notification of the Delhi government banning the sale, production, storage, supply, importation, and use of all forms of manja. The ban exists in order to prevent humans, birds, and other animals as well as the environment from being harmed. The notification permits flying kites only with a cotton thread free of any material designed to increase its sharpness or strength.
Selling manja is punishable under Section 15 of the EPA, 1986, including by up to five years’ imprisonment, a fine of up to Rs 1 lakh, or both – and the Delhi government’s notification authorises officers of the rank of sub-inspector and above to take action against sellers and buyers of the banned string.
After receiving complaints from PETA India, the Delhi police seized about 100 kilograms of manja during each raid from various shops in the Sadar Bazar and Bara Hindu Rao areas during the first week of August 2019 and from the Lal Kuan kite market (near Chandni Chowk and Chand Mohalla in Gandhi Nagar) in 2018.
Thousands of birds are killed every year when they’re cut or trapped by manja, which can get caught on trees or buildings and remain there for weeks. In February 2019, a motorcyclist died in the Timarpur area after his neck was slashed by manja. In July 2019, a 3-year-old girl died after a stray piece of manja cut the neck of her uncle, causing the motorcycle they were riding to crash.
Please help stop the sale and use of sharp manja across India immediately: