14 Die During Kite Flying Celebrations in Pakistan

14 deaths were reported this year from the annual Basant kite flying celebrations in Pakistan.

* 1 slashed throat from kite string
* 4 deaths from stray bullets
* 6 deaths from falling off buildings while flying kites
* 1 death from kite flying brawl
* 2 electrocutions

200 others were injured during the celebrating, mostly from falls.

Kite festival : Pakistani youths enjoy flying kites during the Basant or kite flying festival in Lahore. Basant, a festival of colours and kites, marks the advent of spring season in line with a Punjabi maxim. (AFP/Arif Ali)
The AFP reports on the kite flying deaths from this year’s Basant celebration:

Islamic groups staged protests on Monday after 14 people, including a child, were killed and 200 injured during an annual kite flying festival in central Pakistan.

The seven-year-old boy died when an illegal kite string coated in broken glass slashed his throat during the Basant festival near Lahore, local police officer Ahmed Hasan said.

Stray bullets fired in the air killed four people, six kite flyers fell to their deaths from rooftops and a young man died in a brawl, Hasan added.

Another two men were electrocuted after the metal rods they were using to catch stray kites caught on power lines, officials in Lahore added.

Most of the wounded had head injuries caused by falling from rooftops, the officials said.

Lahore police chief Malik Iqbal said nearly 600 people were arrested for firing guns in the air or using banned kite strings.

As of last year… 861 people have died in Pakistan from kite flying incidents since 2000!

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