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Kite market witnesses downward spiral; Bareilly outshines China

By Staff
|
Google Oneindia News

New Delhi, Aug 13 (UNI) The acme is a hue of myriad colours and a maze of crisp thin kites skitters overhead as Independence Day draws near.

The charm of this pastime takes the national capital and its neighbours by storm.

While the market flooded with a pantheon of kites in all shapes and sizes, it is the kites, and strings (manja) of Bareilly that are raking in all the business and moolah. Chinese products, which once seemed a potent threat to its Indian counterparts, have fallen on their faces.

The kites from China are a major no-no. Their designs are distinct and eye-catchy and they worked well only for the first four years. They are heavy, expensive and made of plastic cloth, which drains out the charm from the entire aerial acrobatics.

On the other hand, Indian-made paper kites are light in weight and moreover they don't burn a hole in your pocket and are much more fun.

The price range of Chinese-made and Indian-made kites start from Rs 20 and 50 paise each, respectively.

" The kites and strings of Bareilly are a hit among the old and young alike. The strings from Bareilly are sharp as they are prepared by heating the string with glass and dried in sun.

The Chinese strings are nothing but plastic with no strength at all," said Anish of Jaffar Bhai Patang Wale at the Lal Kuan, market in Chandni Chowk.

One Sushil, who had come to buy some kites with his friends, also agreed with Anish, saying the real fun lies in the paper kites. " Jab tak patang kate nahin, tab tak koi maza nahin (Till the time you do not cut some strings in kite duels, there is no fun.) Another shopkeeper seemed taken away by the emotions of country love. " All the stuff in my shop is from Bareilly.

Why to keep anything foreign, we are Indians,'' he replied when asked why he had decided to sell exclusively Indian-made kites.

Despite the kites and strings of Bareilly capturing the mood of the buyers, the market this year is teetering. " The market this time has gone down and as you can see, there are no buyers," says Babloo, another shopkeeper in the same market. Though he was unaware of the reasons for the same, Anish held three points as the cause of the flop show. " The severe heat, shrawan and rains have spoilt the charm," he said.

"There is searing heat and humidity due to which kite flying seems a gigantic task," he added. " The rains have proved another spoilsport and with the month of Shrawan, most of the shopkeepers have gone to Hardwar".

Earlier on, it used to be a no profit-no loss affair but this time around it has simply been a no-profit venture.

Come August 15 and these shopkeepers will move to Rajasthan, another promising market with Teej just round the corner.

However, this Independence Day, it is clear that there are no takers for the Chinese products when it comes to experiencing the adventures of sending the molded form of paper into the skies.

UNI

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