Flying vibrant and colorful kites with your family or buddies under the morning sun while you chill out on a rooftop is among the chief pleasures of Makar Sankranti. The joy of snapping others’ kites in the air is unmatched and the euphoria a common sight on this festival of kites in the city.
This year it is being celebrated on January 15. Apart from flying kites, on this day Til-Gul (sweets made of sesame seeds and jaggery) are also exchanged.
Markets are flooded with colorful kites catching the fancy of many. As plastic kites are banned, apart from the traditional paper ones, kites made of cloth are also becoming popular. These kites come in different sizes and rates vary from Rs 2 to Rs 150.
Pratik Borkar, a kite seller from the city, has displayed a variety of kites in his shop for the upcoming festival. “We have over 10-15 types of kites in our shop. Right from Rs 2 to the most expensive one, all are paper-made,” he said. About the most popular type, he added, “Goladar’ is the most sold kite in my shop. Children also purchase small kites in different shapes.”
From ‘Delta’ kites which are triangular-shaped to ‘diamond’ ones, which are easily recognizable from the sky, all are very popular. Himanshu Shahu from Mahesh Patang Store expressed his views about the ban on plastic kites, “Initially, we did order plastic kites, as they are cheaper and are sold in bulk. But afterward, I returned the complete stock.”
Cloth kites are a new trend. They are made of the material used for making parachutes. “People are buying cloth kites, which are available in different shapes and vibrant colors. The most expensive one in my shop is for Rs 150,” Shahu added.
Apart from the traditional, multi-color kites, kites with printed faces of Bollywood stars and cartoon characters are liked by the children. Jitender Shahu from Jitendra Patang store said, “There is a wide variety of kites in the market. I have kept all the colorful and printed ones in my shop and we are not selling any plastic ones.”
Sellers expressed their concern about plastic kites and are backing the decision to ban them. Not only at the prominent markets but everywhere only paper kites are being sold even if that means selling less. “We are selling paper kites at the cost of plastic ones. Flying kites will always be done. Every year people come to our shops and get their favorite kites,” said Praful Kamdi, a kite seller.
Many people make kites at home using paper. The exercise usually involves the whole family and is a great way to bond.
(With inputs from timesofindia)