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Old 15th January 2014, 12:32   #1
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Default Kite manja: The thin line of death

Are we safe riding in a country which wants to shout out Kai-Po-Che?

Kai-Po-Che what? Cut the kite? Or slit his throat?

Read these two articles today and was shocked:

http://www.mumbaimirror.com/mumbai/o...w/28826007.cms

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/c...w/28808265.cms

Why does any festival has to end up on the road? Creating nuisance for the motorists and in this case, being a reason for someones death.

If you think you would walk away if you are wearing some protective armour, think twice. This is what happened to my friends bike yesterday. I was just happy to note that it did not touch him and got stuck by the indicator + headlamp fairing.

Kite manja: The thin line of death-1184868_10153713300340621_1255984772_n.jpg

This has happened with me too when I was riding with my visor open after I just moved off the signal. A kite string got stuck in my helmet and started rubbing against my nose. I stopped immediately, had my eyes closed. On observing closely, I noticed a black line of dust on my nose, just below the eyes. Had it been a manja, the story could have been worse.

From my incident, there could have been 3 end results:
1. The manja could have hurt me, deeply.
2. I had my eyes closed as soon as something started rubbing, making me prone to hit someone on either sides.
3. Panic braking could lead to someone else rear ending me.

Is it really worth enjoying a festival to the limit of unknowingly killing someone?

Last edited by parrys : 15th January 2014 at 12:43.
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Old 15th January 2014, 13:07   #2
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

Not just humans, it is more deadly for the poor birds flying.

I once had a pigeon tangle itself to the kite string of the kite that i was flying and fall. Luckily the bird was not injured seriously and was able to fly off after we untangled its legs from the manjha.

That was more than 10-15 years back and the last day i flew a kite.
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Old 15th January 2014, 14:38   #3
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

Actually, the traditional stuff with manja was bad, but not very very bad.
The Chinese stuff in the markets recently is lethal. It will decapitate you.
Ludhiana city banned this chinese string. However, its being used in Delhi and other cities.
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Old 15th January 2014, 15:20   #4
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

Manja is gummed, coloured and coated with powdered glass. This makes it lethal.
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Old 15th January 2014, 15:23   #5
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

In 2004, I accidentally snagged on a Kite String of a low flying kite when riding my Thunderbird back from work, with a full face helmet (Studds Ninja) on, but with the Visor open, since I was wearing spectacles.

The string got stuck beneath my nose and dug into the flesh before breaking. I had lacerations on both cheeks and beneath my nose, which took a good month or so to heal.

This was the good old Indian string, and not the Chinese one.

I still shudder to think what could have happened had the string hit my eyes or my throat.

This is indeed deadly, and the seemingly innocuous past-time of flying kites does need some guidelines and controls. The list of kite-related accidents is long.

My heart goes out for the little girl who lost her life. :(
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Old 15th January 2014, 15:32   #6
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

One person named Rahul Nagpure died yesterday in Nagpur. He was on bike when Manja slit his throat which caused serious injuries to him resulting in his death.

Link from Marathi News channel

http://abpmajha.newsbullet.in/videos...01-14-14-52-03

Last edited by driving_smartly : 15th January 2014 at 15:37.
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Old 15th January 2014, 15:56   #7
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

Let me talk about a little bit similar case - that of Diwali.

When I drive (2wh or 4wh) on a Diwali evening, I make sure that I am triple cautious about what people in my surrounding are doing. I can't blame someone for blasting a cracker on a Diwali eve. Infact I once had an argument with a guy because once the cracker infront of me exploded, the paper and other junk fell on my car's bonnet. What happened was that 20 other people came out against me (the victim). So in a practical scenario, nobody actually cares for the victim of these stray incidents.

Coming back to the festival of Kite flying.
I stay in Bangalore and haven't seen extreme kite flying that could be fatal for a road user.
But then, I don't see anybody flying kite on a main road. Incase I have to enter a narrow bylane or a highly residential colony type area, I would be 100 times more careful of stray kite strings here and there.

Ofcourse, a kite string is nearly invisible, but then if I am relatively slow on my ride, I am sure it wouldn't do a fatal damage.

I am just putting my thoughts, and not at all advocating for the manjas laced with glass powder. Just trying to tell people to be careful during these times. May be wear a good scarf around the neck (which is more vulnerable), anyways, its Winter.

Bottomline is things in India do not change. Your life ends, but kite flying won't stop for generations. Why not be XXX-Cautious when riding ?
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Old 15th January 2014, 16:12   #8
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

My friend was riding his cycle when he ran into the manja, he somehow couldn't stop in time & ended up with pretty bad cuts on his neck(nothing serious luckily), still has the scars after 20 years now. It's pretty dangerous I'd say.
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Old 15th January 2014, 17:14   #9
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

I will admit I am an avid kite flyer.
However, I hate it when it becomes a matter of death for a poor bird or a human being.
Just to extrapolate, the manja is not just lethal when it is being used for flying, but the manja of kites stuck in trees and dangling for large distances over cables and buildings is even more dangerous for birds.

In the next 20-25 days I will get to see atleast 7-8 birds from my place stuck in these dangling strings. I myself have sometimes saved 1 or 2 and then hand them to the vet's clinic nearby; rest are taken care of by the fire brigade.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
The Chinese stuff in the markets recently is lethal. It will decapitate you.
What you are talking about here is the Nylon manja. It is the worst cuz, it won't snap or break even under high stress. It is the worst for birds and yes humans too.

-Bhargav

Last edited by Octane_Power : 15th January 2014 at 17:18.
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Old 15th January 2014, 17:17   #10
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by driving_smartly View Post
One person named Rahul Nagpure died yesterday in Nagpur. He was on bike when Manja slit his throat which caused serious injuries to him resulting in his death.

Link from Marathi News channel

http://abpmajha.newsbullet.in/videos...01-14-14-52-03
Festivals are now getting tainted because of people being foolish. The Chinese manja is banned in Amritsar but you can still buy it from known sellers. Its the people who desire it thus its still available.
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Old 15th January 2014, 17:37   #11
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

It is becoming a norm off late, enjoying festivals with ZERO responsibility. The same is with Diwali, flying rockets into each other's building, crackers being burst on busy roads and what not. Though kite flying is not that famous in Bangalore, with a lot of migrant population I don't think it would take long for it to catch up here too. I only wish, everyone thinks of everyone's safety.

Last edited by n_aditya : 17th January 2014 at 11:36. Reason: thanks for doing the spell check.
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Old 15th January 2014, 17:56   #12
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

Manja is something which was too common in Chennai and has caused many deaths. It took many long years for the Govt and Police to impose a ban and more importantly implement it. Even then there are people still using Manja. It is traditionally prepared using gum, powdered glass/blade etc which is too dangerous for any biker.
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Old 15th January 2014, 18:01   #13
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

On the same note -

http://www.mumbaimirror.com/mumbai/o...w/28826007.cms
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Old 15th January 2014, 18:45   #14
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Actually, the traditional stuff with manja was bad, but not very very bad.
The Chinese stuff in the markets recently is lethal. It will decapitate you.
Ludhiana city banned this chinese string. However, its being used in Delhi and other cities.
Agree with you, the Chinese 'Manjha' has really made the life very risky.

I am from Rajasthan where kiting taken as passion in most cities/towns. Manjha used for the kiting is very risky, especially for the birds, animals, even for the people riding on two wheelers or walking on the street. Its made of cotton based thread + glass/metal powder glued on the thread. Newspapers of the day after Makar-Sankranti' are filled with mishaps caused during kiting.

There are no regulations on the kiting stuffs sold during the kiting festival season. Now the Chinese Manjha has also entered in our markets which is too much risky because its not made of traditional cotton based threads, rather its made of some sort of wires which doesn't easily cut/break. People end up buying such products in hunt of getting more n more unbreakable threads to win the kiting-fights during the festival, they don't think about the threat to others life associated with such threads, forget about the care for birds.

Last year I saw a picture of a Maruti-800 car's bonnet in a newspaper which got cut about more than 1.5 inches when Manjha got stuck in it, traditional Manjha atleast can't withstand against metal but the wire-based Chinese Manjha can, such is the fate of that Chinese Manjha.

Now imagine a situation when someone riding on bike and suddenly this Chinese Manjha comes in his way and wraps around the throat! Chances are still there in case of cotton based threads, but the Chinese stuff acts like a sharp knife.

The incidents mentioned in the various links posted in the thread warn us. When only traditional Manjha was available in the market, people used to buy and use it but now when Chines stuff is available, people are going for it. Some people care and avoid such stuffs but not all. There should be some strict regulation on the kiting stuffs sold in the market. Even there should be some norms for making and selling the traditions Manjha so that risks associated with that are also minimized.

Here is link of the local news article with the photos. Article is same which was posted earlier but it also covers some other mishaps and also contains photos of the birds and people got affected:
http://daily.bhaskar.com/article/RAJ...PHO.html?seq=5

Last edited by tbppjpr : 15th January 2014 at 19:03.
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Old 15th January 2014, 18:59   #15
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Default Re: Kite manja: The thin line of death

This is how it is in India. Be it festival of decapitations, (oh sorry!! "Kites") or the festival of burns and lung cancer, (oh sorry!! "Lights") or Ganpati processions or marriages, it is not safe to venture out. I agree, we cannot ask people (especially underprivileged) to find some place to burst crackers or fly kites or have a marriage procession other than on the public roads because they do not have any. But somebody getting injured or our inconvenience is just too small a deal to consider when they have more important things to do.

We have to accept it and move on. Even if we complain, the Police are not going to do anything about it except, of course, try and get some "bakshish" out of us only, because they know we can't do anything and are supposed to be the well to do, perpetually scared "middle class".
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