Gallery: Kai po che! Colourful kites kiss Indian skies

ALMAS MEHERALLY
VANCOUVER DESI



Picture 1 of 30

A kite flyer from Russia holds his kite on the opening day of the three-day kite festival in Ahmadabad, India, Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014. Kite flyers from various countries and across India are participating in the festival that is annually held on the Sabarmati riverfront here. AP Photo/Ajit Solanki

India’s kite-flying festival celebrates the ‘Makara Sankranti’ or the harvest festival, one of the most auspicious occasions for the Hindus.

It is believed that Makara Sankranti marks the onset of spring in India and observed when the Sun transitions into Capricorn zodiac.

The festival is celebrated on a huge scale in Gujarat and called the Uttarayan. Many locals start making kites and the special threads for kite-flying called the manja weeks in advance, which provides sustenance for many poor families who turn their homes into mini-manufacturing units.

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the International Kite Festival  2014 on Monday, reported Indian news wire PTI. The kite market in 2001-02 was Rs 30-35 crore and has today crossed Rs 500 crore and become a source of livelihood for the poorest of the poor, Modi said.

The BJP’s Prime Ministerial nominee said that the kite festival signifies love for nature, environment and tourism and a special energy is derived from such festivities.

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