District officials on Saturday issued an order enforcing the ban on sale of ‘Chinese manjha’, an abrasive kite string of plastic, with immediate effect, a day after a plastic kite string slit a 52-year-old biker’s throat on Thakurdwara Flyover in old Ghaziabad.
“I have directed the additional district magistrate’s and sub divisional magistrates to ensure that sales of the item are stopped with immediate effect,” said Ghaziabad district magistrate Vimal Kumar Sharma.
An Allahabad High Court order of November 2015 banned the sale of ‘Chinese manjha’ or ‘plastic manjha’. “The state government shall adopt all appropriate steps for enforcement in accordance with law, including necessary steps to prohibit manufacture, use and sale of “Chinese Manjha” in any form whatsoever,” said the order by a bench of then chief justice Dr Dhananjaya Yeshwant Chandrachud and justice Yashwant Varma.
The decision was taken on a PIL that highlighted the need to prohibit the manufacturing or sale of ‘manjha’ after many incidents of injuries and death were reportedly caused by it. But manjha continued to be freely sold.
Friday’s accident showed that ‘plastic manjha’ continued to be sold, despite the ban.
Kite-flying is celebrated with much fervour during the monsoons, especially in Ghaziabad’s old city. Often the kite’s abrasive string kills or injures birds too.
Animal activists also said the ban was necessary to curb such incidents.
“There has to be some enforcement by officials if the court had issued orders in this regard. During kite-flying season, the birds get injured due to kite string and are even found dead several times,” said Ruchin Mehra, an activist from People for Animals society, Ghaziabad.
Meanwhile, Ghaziabad superintendent of police Salmantaj Patil said they registered a case of culpable homicide not amounting to murder against unidentified persons at Kotwali police station.