International Kite Day and its Significance
International Kite Day is observed every year on 14 January. It is observed across India to celebrate the festival of Makar Sankranti. It is widely celebrated across India; However, it has special presence in the state of Gujarat. On this day, people go the roof of their house and let their kite free in the sky. Sky relishes the multitude of colours and people enjoy the scenes along with winter weather.
Kite makers start preparing for the festival months in advance. Markets are packed with kite aficionados and festival goers buying supplies days before the festivities.
History of International Kite Day
Kite flying used to be a pastime for royalty and the rich. However, in recent years it’s turned into a festival for everyone. There are participants from Japan, Italy, the United Kingdom, Canada, China, Indonesia, Singapore, the United States, Malaysia, Australia, France, and Brazil.
Kite Day originated in India, where it is most popularly observed in Ahmedabad in the northern state of Gujarat. The festival is known as Uttarayan in Hindi, while in other parts of India it’s called Makar Sankranti. International Kite Day is observed on day of Makar Sankranti. On this day, Sun is also just tropic of Capricorn which is also known as Makar Rekha in Hindi
This day marks the change from winter to summer, as well as the upcoming winter harvest. People come from all over to celebrate. Kites are a way to symbolize the gods waking up after winter slumber.
The most common kites are made of lightweight colourful paper with bamboo frames. There are also kites with Bollywood stars or social themes. During the festival, kite fliers try to cut each other’s strings and knock down their kites by coating their lines with rice and crushed glass. Fireworks light up the night sky.