Kites, Knives, Throats

Islamists are trying to ban the flying of kites in Pakistan. But they may not be the worst threat to the tradition, especially during the festival of Basant which welcomes the spring. Money quote:

Basant's kite flying may have promoted social harmony and moderate society in the past. Unfortunately it does just the opposite today.

Over the past decade, Basant has been hijacked by kite-flying fanatics. Cut throat kite-flyers have been using metal twine. The aim: to cut opponents' kite wires. The collateral damage: hundreds of slit throats. A beautiful cultural tradition has degenerated into a murderous sport. Reports say that hundreds have been killed or wounded when their throats were cut by razor-sharp kite twine.

Mary Poppins meets Quentin Tarantino.