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360° Video: Why Old Delhi Residents Feed Meat to Black Kites

Watch this 360° video to find out why the people of Delhi 6 feed meat to black kites.

Updated
360 VR
2 min read

Sadaqah’, a term from the Holy Quran which means charity or benevolence without the intention of seeking something in return and to please the Almighty, is something people living in the narrow lanes of old Delhi take very seriously. A kind word, a smile or even feeding black kites is their way of offering Sadaqah.

Kite-feeding is a centuries-old tradition, passed down through generations, and people here, even today, religiously perform this ‘good deed’ once a week.

“My father used to take me and my siblings out not only to feed black kites, but also pigeons, parrots, cats and even ants. We used to make balls made of flour to feed ants.”
Noor Jahan, an Old Delhi resident 
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Although black kites look ferocious, and there is a significant risk of injury in feeding them, those who feed them in Old Delhi show no sign for fear. Once, Noor Jahan was attacked by a black kite on her forehead. And yet, every Tuesday and Saturday, she’s up on the terrace to feed them.

It is believed that feeding these birds helps in the recovery of an ailing family member and keeps the family from harm’s way.

Where does the meat comes from?

The meat fed to the black kites does not comes from a regular butcher shops. Few street side vendors exclusively sell meat for black kites and cats.

These butchers start their day early around 3-4 am. The meat is basically the discarded parts of a slaughtered animal. Sometimes, the butchers come with as much as 300kg of meat, but all of it is gets sold within four to five hours of setting shop.

Clearly, the kites have quite an appetite, and there’s not a shortage of people who choose to feed them.

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