Jallikattu: Tamil Nadu determined to take the bull by the horns

Miranda GreerЯнв 20, 2017

Supreme Court has imposed a ban on the centuries-old bull taming sport Jallikattu. The scope of this ban extended to jallikattu and other animal races across the country effectively putting a ban on the traditional sport of Tamil Nadu.

Actor Suriya, in between his promotional tour for upcoming Tamil action "C3", lashed out at animal rights advocacy group PETA, which is aggressively campaigning against Jallikattu.

The Supreme Court originally outlawed the event in 2014 on a petition by animal activists. The Jallikattu belt - mainly the districts of Madurai, Tiruchirappalli, Theni, Pudukkottai and Dindigul - still breeds pure native studs, and activists say Jallikattu was always more a way to honour bull owners than being a competitive sport.

The arrests sparked off a social media campaign, leading to protests across the state, with around 6,000 people turning up at Chennai's Marina Beach alone by Tuesday evening. On January 16, the Supreme Court stuck to its earlier judgment banning the sport.

New Delhi Delhi Tamil Students & Youngsters shout slogan during a protest against People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and the ban on Jallikattu in New Delhi

The Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) first filed a case in the Supreme Court of India for an outright ban on Jallikattu because of the cruelty to animals and the threat to public safety involved. As the youngsters fight out the various law enforcing agencies in the most passive manner I support the cause of the people of Tamil Nadu who support Jallikattu. The term "Jallikattu", originated from the Tamil words Salli and Kattu, referring to silver or gold coins tied to the bulls' horns.

Modi virtually indicated his government's inability to promulgate an ordinance on allowing jallikattu, noting that the matter was sub judice.

Several other publications, including Britain's Daily Mail and Dubai's Gulf Times carried AFP copies which portrays Prime Minister Narendra Modi negatively for Jallikattu supporters. If it is not, the protests are set to continue, bringing normal life to a standstill in the state. A bag of coins was attached to the hump of the bull, which was for the bull tamer to win if he was successful in his mission.

It said the Centre would be supportive of steps taken by the State Government.

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"The day-long fast is aimed at showing our solidarity with the students, who are protesting", said Vice President of the association Ponvannan.

"This is an attack on our culture", said Manikanda Venkatesh, a student from Tamil Nadu.

Karthikeya Sivasenapathy, Vice-Chancellor of the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University in Coimbatore, resigned his post in protest against the ban. The chief minister of Tamil Nadu has approached the central government to issue an ordinance for allowing the sport.

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