Two children and a man have died in Delhi after their throats were slit by glass-coated strings used for flying kites on Indian independence day, The Guardian reports.
Sanchi Goyal, three, and a four-year-old identified only as Harry, both suffered fatal injuries while looking out of the sunroof of their cars in different parts of the Indian capital on Monday. Zafar Khan, 22, died after his neck became entangled in a string while he was on his motorbike.
Kite-flyers use glass-coated strings to bring down rivals’ kites but they frequently inflict injuries.
Kite-flying is very popular in India, particularly during festivals and celebrations.
Goyal was standing on her mother’s lap when she was struck, according to the Hindustan Times. It quoted a senior police officer as saying: “The manja [kite string] had cut through her neck, including the windpipe. The cut was so deep she died instantly.” She was declared dead on arrival at hospital.
Harry was on a long drive to celebrate independence day with his parents when he too had his windpipe slit, the website reported. Dependra Pathak, a police official, told the Indian Express that Khan suffered severe head injuries and died due to excessive bleeding after a kite string lodged in his neck, causing him to fall from his motorbike.
Police are investigating all of the incidents on suspicion of causing death by negligence. An eight-year-old boy was also injured by a kite string in Ghaziabad, east of Delhi, and required at least 20 stitches, the Hindustan Times reported.
In response to the spate of incidents, the Delhi government has banned metal or glass kite strings and offenders face up to five years in prison and/or a fine of 100,000 rupees (£1,146).
Last October, the eastern city of Chennai banned flying kites with string made of glass and/or metal pieces after the death of a five-year-old boy, stipulating a maximum punishment of six months in jail.