The IKF brings master kite flyers and kite makers from across the globe to showcase their unique creations and talent and mesmerise the spectators with highly unusual kites.
The ancient city of Ahmedabad has hosted the international Kite Festival since 1989 as part of the state’s official celebration of Uttarayan. The IKF brings master kite flyers and kite makers from across the globe to showcase their unique creations and talent and mesmerise the spectators with highly unusual kites. We take a look at the five key achievements of the international kite festival so far.
1. Longest lasting state effort in tourism: IKF has completed 30 years in a democratic set up. All successive governments continued/supported with improvisation – a rare programme in the world.
2. International fame: IKF is a globally talked about much loved festival. During this year, 151 master kite flyers from 45 countries and 105 from 13 Indian States and 545 kite flyers from Gujarat will take part.
3. A major celebration in Ahmedabad: IKF venue visited by 4.10 lakh persons in just eight days of event – an average of 51,250 visitors per day. (2017-18)
4. Celebrations in other towns: Now, a one-day celebration of festival is organised in many other towns. The visitors flow there is additional.
5. Succeeded in sustenance of Kite industry for inclusive growth: The IKF could play a major in continuing interest in kite flying, attracting tourists to the festival and improving the industry performance. Now, Kite industry in the state could grow from worth about Rs 100 crore in 2002-03 to Rs 625 crore in 2017-18.
The festival is taking place on the banks of Sabarmati river in Ahmedabad and is expected to boost tourism industry in Gujarat. Similar kite festivals will be organised across the state in towns such as Surat, Vadodara, Saputara, Rajkot, Dwarka, Jetpur, Songadh, Kevadia and Dhorado over the coming week.
(The reporter is in Gujarat on the invitation of Gujarat Tourism)