Jayalalithaa urges Modi to promulgate Ordinance for Jallikattu
Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa requesting the Central government to issue an ordinance that would enable the conduct of Jallikattu. In her letter to the PM, "Important that sentiments of people of Tamil Nadu attached to Jallikattu are respected," as per media reports.
Recalling that she had requested PM on December 22 last year to promulgate an Ordinance to enable holding Jallikattu, she said, "Considering the urgency of the issue, I strongly reiterate my earlier request to promulgate an Ordinance forthwith to enable the conduct of Jallikattu."
Asserting that sentiments of the people should be respected, Jayalalithaa said arrangements have already been made by organisers all over the state for conducting Jallikattu.
After she had requested an Ordinance, the Centre issued a notification on January 7 enabling conduct of Jallikattu in different parts of Tamil Nadu as part of the Pongal festivities, she said.
However, the Centre had also put some conditions, saying bullock cart race shall be organised on a proper track, which shall not exceed two kilometres. In case of Jallikattu, the moment the bull leaves the enclosure, it shall be tamed within a radial distance of 15 metres.
It should also be ensured that bulls are put to proper tests by authorities of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Department to ensure that they are in good physical condition to participate in the event. Performance enhancement drugs are not to be administered to the bulls, the notification had said.
The use of bulls in performances was banned by the UPA government in 2011 on the ground that the sport ended in cruelty to the animals. DMK supremo Karunanidhi too asked for an Ordinance to hold the event. Earlier today, Supreme Court today stayed the Centre's notification lifting ban on the controversial game as an interim measure.
The court rejected the plea of Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) and Tamil Nadu that Jallikattu is part of the ancient tradition and culture and should not be stopped as there were enough safeguards provided in the January 7 notification.
"As an interim measure, we direct that there shall be stay of notification dated January 7, 2016 issued by the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF)," a bench of Justices Dipak Misra and NV Ramana said while issuing notices to the Centre and others on a batch of pleas challenging the notification.
At the outset, the petitions filed by bodies including Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) and People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India were listed before a bench headed by Chief Justice TS Thakur. However, CJI Thakur referred the petitions to the bench headed by Justice Misra after Justice Banumathi, who hails from Tamil Nadu and is presently part of the CJI's bench, recused from hearing them. Jallikattu also known Eruthazhuvuthal is a bull taming sport played in Tamil Nadu as a part of Pongal celebrations on Mattu Pongal day.
Meanwhile, spporters of the bull taming sport today staged protests in Tamil Nadu after Supreme Court stayed the Centre's notification lifting the ban on it. Dismayed supporters and organisers of the sport resorted to agitations and road blockades in some parts of Tamil Nadu and downed shutters in various areas, including those in
Madurai district, hitting normalcy. Police said the situation in some areas in Madurai district where the sport has largely been held traditionally was tense, but under control. Protests were held in areas including Alanganallur, Palamedu and Avaniapuram in the district.