Punjab Govt is Considering Anti-Terrorism Punishments for Kite Flying

Kite flying has been banned in Punjab for nearly two decades. However, despite the government’s efforts, it has killed more than 200 individuals during this time.

Now, in an attempt to end the threat posed by kite strings, the provincial government is considering changes to the Kite Flying Act, possibly integrating it into the Anti-Terrorism Act.

It should be recalled that the ban on kite flying was imposed in 2005 after 25 individuals lost their lives. However, the ban was briefly lifted in 2006 and 2007 before being imposed again due to more deaths.

Following directives from the Supreme Court in 2009, the Kite Flying Act was enacted to grant authorities the power to clamp down on violators. However, despite its implementation, no kite flyers or string manufacturers have faced major penalties.

Chemical strings, which account for 90% of fatalities, often cause severe neck or facial injuries. While the enforcement of the Kite Flying Act has contributed to a decline in fatalities since 2009, the annual toll still averages 17 to 20 deaths and 50 to 55 injuries, particularly during Punjab’s spring festival of Basant.

Despite numerous arrests and legal actions against kite makers, flyers, and string sellers, efforts to curb the menace have seen limited success. Lahore has recorded the highest number of cases and arrests related to kite flying.

Provincial Information Minister Azma Bukhari has acknowledged the persistent issue of kite flying and emphasized the government’s dedication to tackling it.

The provincial government is mulling over strict amendments to the Kite Flying Act. Immediate actions involve cracking down on kite flying and implementing legal reforms to impose harsh penalties on those who violate the law.

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