| Labourers at Sabbalpur Diara busy in preparations for the kite festival. Picture by Ashok Sinha |
The Bihar State Tourism Development Corporation (BSTDC) has roped in three nationally acclaimed professionals for the Patna Kite Festival to be held on January 15, Makar Sankranti day, instead of January 14.
Preparations for the fest are in the last lap at Sabbalpur Diara. Two volleyball courts and six sitting lounges have been built, while four canopy tents have been erected at the sandbar for the third edition of the event.
“As Makar Sankranti is on January 15, the kite festival would be held that day. Invitation has been sent to the chief minister’s secretariat to inaugurate the event. A large area has been earmarked for flying kites. The corporation would provide around 200 kites and spindle to revellers for free at the spot,” said a senior BSTDC officer.
The fest would start at 10am and conclude at 5pm. Professional kite-flyers from Gujarat would enthral visitors. Besides, people can savour delicacies on sale at snacks huts.
“Snacks would be available at the food court. The industries department has also shown interest in setting up some stalls at the sandbar for displaying its exhibits,” said the BSTDC official.
Foolproof security arrangements would be made for the festival. “We have written letters to the district magistrates of Patna and Vaishali for deploying enough police force at the sandbar for the kite festival. Special cleanliness drive would be undertaken at the diara before the festival,” said the BSTDC official.
The first kite festival was organised in the city in 2012. It was a two-day event from January 14 at Sabbalpur Diara. The fest was inaugurated by chief minister Nitish Kumar. A group of professional kite-flyers from Gujarat had participated in it. Poor wind speed had played spoilsport during the fest last year.
This year, the breeze is expected to be favourable for flying kites. “Westerly winds are blowing at an average speed of 8 to 10kmph, which is sufficient for kites flying high. With the skies clearing up from today (Sunday), we expect the wind speed to be optimum for flying kites on January 15,” said P.N. Chaudhary, meteorologist, India Meteorological Department, Patna.