Gandhinagar, Jan 8 (IANS) In a reply sought by the Gujarat High Court on a PIL seeking prohibition on kite flying in Gujarat during the upcoming ‘Uttarayan’ or ‘Makar Sankranti’, the Gujarat government on Friday submitted a set of guidelines to be followed by the citizens during the kite flying festival.
According to the guidelines, only family members would be allowed on their terraces during kite flying. The state government would also be strictly monitoring the market places such as Raipur Tankshaal, Naroda, among others with drone and CCTV cameras to stop gathering of crowds as well as banning the use of loudspeakers and sound systems on terraces.
Representing the Gandhinagar Animal Welfare Foundation, one Maulik Mankad had filed a PIL on Tuesday in the Gujarat High Court seeking prohibition on the sale of kites and threads in Gujarat, as it led to large gatherings during ‘Uttarayan’.
The foundation wants a complete ban imposed on gatherings for kite flying at one place from January 9 to 17.
The court had asked the government lawyer to take instructions from it and had scheduled the hearing on Friday.
The Gujarat government through its advocate general, Kamal Trivedi, has assured that night curfew would be strictly implemented in Gujarat from January 11 to January 14.
‘Uttarayan’ or ‘Makar Sankranti’ falls on January 14 (Thursday) and January 15 (Friday), respectively.
The Gujarat government has already decided to cancel its annual International Kite Festival held every year during the festival of ‘Uttarayan’.
The PIL said people also gather to get the kite threads coated with glass from street vendors. The people celebrated the festival with friends and families which raised the risk of coronavirus infection, the PIL added.
The PIL also warned that vendors of kites and threads as well as those involved in coating the kite thread could become super-spreaders of Covid-19 in the present situation.
The PIL submitted before the court that police patrolling and drone surveillance is required during Uttarayan, to enforce Covid safety guidelines, including masks, social distancing, among others.
It also sought direction from the court to impose a ban on gatherings of more than four people at one place, whether it is on the terrace, footpath, or roads, for kite flying.
The medical and paramedical staff were combating Covid-19 for the last nine months and unrestricted celebrations would add to their workload, the PIL added.
Gujarat saw a huge spike in Covid cases post-Diwali, which is now coming under control after more than a month.