Chandigarh, Feb 4 (PTI) Environmental conservation, women empowerment and gender equality, are the themes of the upcoming kite flying festival to be held in Ferozepur, the first such state-level competition, officials said.
Over 5,000 kite enthusiasts are expected to participate in the 'Basant Panchmi Kite Festival-2024', to be held from February 10-11, Ferozepur Deputy Commissioner Rajesh Dhiman said.
The festival will present a spectacle of kites of different colours with slogans on the three themes taking to the sky.
There has always been a craze for kite flying among people, especially children and youth, of Punjab. The skies dot with colourful kites of different sizes and shapes especially during the Lohri festival and Basant Panchmi.
"This is for the first time that a state-level kite flying competition is going to be held," Dhiman said.
"The theme of the kite festival will be environment conservation, women empowerment and gender equality," Dhiman added.
"We want to give different messages through the kite festival. There will be slogans like 'Save the environment', "No stubble burning', 'Save girl child' and related to women empowerment written on the kites," said the DC.
There will be a 'pecha' (kite cutting) challenge in which participants in different age groups can showcase their skills in overpowering their opponents and sparring their kites.
The prize money for the over 18 years age group in male and female categories will be Rs 1 lakh each, followed by Rs 25,000 each for the age group of 10 to 18 years -- boys and girls, said Dhiman.
Non-resident Indians can also participate in the kite flying competition and a winner in this category will be given prize money of Rs 51,000, he added.
The DC further said there will also be a category for 'divyangjan' (persons with disabilities) participants.
'Sabse Bada Patang Baaz' competition is going to be the key highlight of the kite flying challenge, in which the person flying the largest kite will be awarded Rs 2 lakh, revealed Dhiman.
The participant will have to fly the biggest kite for at least 10 minutes, said another official.
As there is a complete ban on the use of Chinese or nylon manjha (string), kite enthusiasts will be required to use cotton thread which is known as 'Indian manjha'.
The interested participants will first have to get themselves registered online for participating in the competition which will take place at Shaheed Bhagat Singh State University in Ferozepur.
More than 2,500 kite enthusiasts from many parts of the state, including Ferozepur, Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Amritsar, Barnala, Faridkot, Bathinda, Fatehgarh Sahib, Fazilka, Hoshiarpur, Gurdaspur, Kapurthala, Mansa, and Mohali have already registered themselves for the kite flying competition.
Before the final rounds of competitions for each category, knockout matches will be conducted, said the official.
The kite flying competition is part of the 'Basant mela' being organised as part of a series of different fairs being held in the state. PTI CHS VSD RPA