Chinese language manja slashed throat, stopped simply wanting windpipe

KOLKATA: The kite string — the nylon one, popularly called , banned in — that slashed the throat of Saikat Dutta, 45, while he was riding his bike on Maa flyover on Saturday stopped mere millimetres short of his windpipe. It could have been fatal had it penetrated deeper. Dutta underwent a three-hour surgery and is recovering.
“The string grazed past the windpipe. It had cut through the platysma muscle right in the middle of the throat. It could have been fatal if it had cut through the trachea,” said Dr Abhik Ghosh, ENT and head and neck surgeon at Apollo Gleneagles Hospitals where Dutta was rushed to by a senior police inspector. “Also, the fact the patient reached hospital quickly helped,” he added.

This is the second such incident on the flyover in the past four months, indicating the danger of Chinese manja on Maa flyover. In December, Class V student was on her way to when she suffered injuries and had to be put on ventilation for some time.

The police officer who rushed Dutta to hospital said: “He did not see the string that possibly got stuck on the flyover after the kite got freed off the spindle. He had deep cuts.”

“Even on Monday, I saw boys flying kites dangerously close to the flyover. Their Chinese manja can lead to more accidents. I informed a traffic sergeant about it but he flatly told me that it did not fall under his purview,” alleged Abhishek Sengupta, a colleague of Dutta.

The cops said they have started a drive against illegal alloy-coated kite string. “We have been getting reports of these strings being spotted on Maa flyover. So we began searches in nearby areas to try and locate those selling these illegal Chinese-made manja. So far, we have not been able to trace those who have hoarded them. We are now trying to find out if these are entering the Karaya-Park Circus belt outside our police station areas,” said DC (south east division) Kalyan Mukherjee.

According to sources, Chinese manja is imported from Surat, Hyderabad and Bengaluru and sold illegally in Tiljala, Maheshtala, Garia and on the outskirts. The cops say kite-sellers in Samsul Huda Road and Suresh Saha Road, which are popular among kite-makers, do not stock manja. “They believe in using cat scat and what not, claiming customers prefer them. We will never make something that will hurt anyone,” claimed Khudabaksh, one of the sellers.

Times View

This is not the first time that such an incident has occurred in this area. Children (and adults) staying in buildings that abut the flyover need to be sensitised about the perils bikers on the road face because of their action.

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