Last Updated: February 10, 2023, 17:47 IST
Court asked the police to file a report detailing the status of the FIRs registered for the use of these threads (File photo/News18)
The high court said that in addition to paying compensation, more needs to be done to control this problem and added that areas where such dangerous threads are sold need to be identified
The Delhi High Court Friday directed the crime branch of Delhi Police to investigate the manufacturing, sale, purchase and storage of Chinese synthetic “manjha”, used for kite flying, in markets and shops here.
The high court said such dangerous threads are used by children and young adults for kite flying and it is the duty of authorities to ensure that they are not made available.
It directed the crime branch to file a report giving details of manufacturers, importers, traders and shopkeepers supplying Chinese manjha and the details of markets where this thread is sold.
“It is directed that the FIRs lodged in cases of deaths by Chinese manjha shall be investigated by the crime branch. Give details whether such shopkeepers have been arrayed as accused or not and whether they have been alerted about the ban on sale of Chinese manjha or not.
“What is the status of these FIRs and whether any proceedings have been initiated against officials who are duty bound to stop the sale of Chinese manjha shall also be submitted in the court,” Justice Prathiba M Singh said, adding that the deaths of innocents caused due to Chinese manjha will also be considered as dereliction of duty.
The high court, which listed the matter for further hearing on April 12, said the notices which will be issued to traders dealing in Chinese manjha shall also include those who are selling it on e-commerce websites.
The court was hearing four petitions by family members of those who died or got injured by Chinese manjha while riding motorcycles, seeking action and compensation.
The petitioners’ counsel submitted that many people died after their throats were slit by Chinese manjha while riding two-wheelers and added that the law imposing ban on the use of Chinese manjha was already there but the issue was regarding its proper implementation.
The high court said that in addition to paying compensation, more needs to be done to control this problem and added that areas where such dangerous threads are sold need to be identified and police need to identify the shopkeepers selling it and lodge a criminal case against them.
As the court wanted to know how the thread harms a rider while wearing a helmet, the petitioners’ counsel said it slits the throat in a barbaric manner.
It said that despite the orders of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) as well as communications issued by various authorities regarding the complete ban on the Chinese manjha, deaths are still being caused in the national capital.
“There needs to be a stricter implementation. It would have to be carried out by officials, including the police authorities, who would have to ensure that the FIRs do not remain paper FIRs and proper investigation is conducted against manufacturer as well as importer and the shopkeepers who would have to be proceeded against as well,” the court said.
It asked the police to file a report detailing the status of the FIRs registered for the use of these threads and whether charge sheets have been filed in the cases.
The court directed that district magistrates, sub-divisional magistrates, tehsildars and local police officials be alerted about the ban once again and they shall conduct periodic inspections to ensure that such material is not sold in markets and that consumers are made aware of the exact quality of the threads they may be using.
“A further affidavit shall be filed in respect of the prayer for compensation to the victims in as much as the deaths of innocent persons caused due to Chinese manjha could also be considered as a dereliction of duty,” it said.
The court also asked the police to examine the feasibility of issuing an advisory for installation of plastic guards on motorcycles to render protection to two-wheeler riders.
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(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed)