Monday, 18 February 2013

A Kite in fright

Wednesday, January 16 was probably one of the most horrifying days for the Pariah Kite that was flying through the hostel block of St Joseph’s College.

Unaware of the thin ‘manja’ that crossed its path, the kite flew right into it. Its right wing got entangled in the string. The bird struggled for minutes but was not able to free itself.  Stuck nearly 9 feet above the ground, it caught the attention of the passing students and staff members.

In an attempt to free the helpless bird, one of the staff members used a stick and began hitting the ‘manja’. This only worsened the condition of the entangled bird, who was now too exhausted to make an effort to release itself.


Photos Courtesy: (Left); (Right)

Environment journalist and part time lecturer, Marianne De Nazareth was a witness to the scene, among many others. Terrified by the plight of the bird and the man’s unsuccessful attempts, she said “There’s no use hitting it, someone needs to cut the string.” One of the students residing in the hostel took her suggestion, immediately got a scissors and cut the ‘manja’.

The still entangled bird fell to the ground and lay there almost dead. A group of students surrounded the bird. While a few took pictures of the helpless creature, the staff members tried to untie the ‘manja’ that was caught around the kite’s wing. The staff member pulled the ‘manja’ so hard that it almost damaged the wing. Finally, the bird was taken away and given water to drink. The kite regained its energy and took flight after a while.

Photo Credit: Sathish Rajan M

The whole scenario was a shocker to many of the onlookers. How often do you see a kite stuck in a ‘manja’? It’s truly a rare sight, as it is said that the vision of these birds are extremely sharp and accurate. At any other normal instance, the bird would have dodged the string.

However, if you ever come across a bird stuck on a string or a wire, the best thing to do, is to handle the situation daintily. After all, their wings are equivalent to our limbs; a small mistake would disable them for life.


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