Ban on metal string for kite-flying to stand
LAHORE: Punjab Minister for Law and Local Bodies Raja Muhammad Basharat told the Punjab Assembly on Monday that though the ban on kite-flying would be lifted for a month from January 20, the ban on metal and nylon string would still stand.
Replying to various questions from the opposition, Mr Basharat said manufacturers have been asked not to sell metal or nylon string and anyone violating the ban would be punished with three years in prison and a fine.
The minister said 42 people had been killed and 425 injured in Lahore by stray string from kites cutting people’s throats in the year before the ban. In the same year, the Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) had lost Rs 3.2 million from power tripping on Sundays alone. The ban had saved WAPDA million of rupees a day. He said the government was considering legislation for a complete ban on kite-flying in the Punjab.
Mr Basharat also said the government had recommended the appointment of 25 new additional and sessions judges. He said the appointments would be made in phases. He said the new judges would help clear the huge backlog of cases in the sessions courts.
To a call attention notice regarding the murder of Rev Barkat Masih, Mr Basharat said the police was still investigating the murder of the priest in Khanewal district on January 5. He said the real culprits were still at large while four men had been taken in for questioning. He said the Khanewal investigation deputy superintendent of police was investigating the case and the murderers would be caught and punished.
Basant festival from Feb 12 to 15
LAHORE: Numerous overseas Pakistanis, foreigners and locals will celebrate the Lahore Basant Festival in the Walled City from February 12 to 15, festival organiser Zulfiqar Bokhari said in a press release on Monday. “An international seminar on cultural understanding will be held on February 12, followed by an opening ceremony with a procession from the Lahore Museum at 3pm on February 13,” Mr Bokhari said. On February 14, foreign tourists would be taken on a tour to the Badshahi Mosque, Lahore Fort, Data Gunj Baksh and Wagah border crossing, he said. Basant night will be celebrated in the Walled City from 7:30pm to 1am, and Basant Day in Shadbagh. He said Lahore was the centre of kite-flying and Basant in Pakistan, and thanked the Punjab chief minister for allowing the festival. —Staff Report