Manja menace is back in Chennai: three-year-old’s throat slit

The menace of kites flown with manja indiscriminately in densely populated areas found another victim in three-and-a-half-year-old Sarwan. A dangling piece of manja — the banned glass-coated thread used to fly kites — slit his throat on Saturday evening.

The boy was injured when his father Saravanan, an IT employee, and mother were taking him to a scan centre to collect his medical report.

The child was already unwell. The father was riding his bike with Sarwan sitting behind him, held by the mother riding pillion on Duraisamy Pillai Road, Ranganathapuram, when a dangling manja cut the child’s neck. The parents rushed him to a private hospital and the doctors stitched up the wound.

Saravanan lodged a complaint. Based on the complaint, the Tambaram police, after investigation, arrested two suspects — M. Murugan, 25, and M. Murali, 24, of Ranganathapuram. Police seized 300 kites and manja threads stocked by them for selling.

Sigithra, mother of the child said, “The manja thread cut my son’s neck. We have no idea where it came from.”

Coated with glass

Though it is banned, manja is used by kite enthusiasts across the city. Manja is a thread specially prepared by coating it with sharp glass pieces. The thread is given the coating so that one kite flyer is able to cut the thread of a competitor in a contest.

Low hanging manja threads pose a serious threat to two-wheeler riders.

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