Hundreds of birds butchered by kite strings at India Independence Day celebrations

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Hundreds of unlucky birds have been butchered by lethal kite strings at Independence Day celebrations in India

Pigeons, crows, eagles and parrots were among those injured by razor-sharp wires during the annual tradition of flying kites over New Delhi. 

The Charity Birds Hospital admitted about 700 birds in three days, but workers say the mass maiming is to be expected every August.

Sadly, 15 per cent of those injured this year died.

A pigeon is treated at the Charity Bird Hospital, New Delhi

Kite flying is extremely popular and competitive in India, with some enthusiasts lining their kite strings with glass or metal in an effort to cut down the kites of their opponents. 

The kite is a symbol of freedom, said local resident Mohammed Shamshuddin: “Once we got independence from the British, we began liberating kites. This is our expression of happiness and freedom.”

But it’s not just animals suffering as a result: last year three people, including two children, were killed when kite strings cut their throats, prompting New Delhi to ban the coating of kite strings with glass.


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