Police said the packets - seized from a vendor - contained balloons which have "I Love Pakistan" and "Habibi(beloved)" imprints.
The two detained men told police that that the balloons came from 'Gubbarey Wali Gali' in Sadar Bazaar in New Delhi, one of the biggest and the oldest wholesale markets in the capital. A police team has been sent to Delhi for further investigation.
A senior police officer in Kanpur, Ashok Verma, told news agency PTI that it was a lawyer, associated with the right-wing group Hindu Yuva Vahini, who first noticed the balloons when he had gone to buy decorative items for his son's birthday from the shop, located near a police station. The lawyer soon alerted police.
Kanpur's top police officer, Inspector General of Police Alok Singh, appealed to the residents to immediately share information with the police if they come across similar cases.
(With inputs from PTI)