Jallikattu Returns to Tamil Nadu Today as Ordinance Gets Governor's Nod
Tamil Nadu Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao has approved the jallikattu ordinance and the bull taming sport will be held at Alaganallur in Madurai and other parts of the state tomorrow, Chief Minister O Panneerselvam announced on Saturday.
Protesters demand the lifting of a Supreme Court-imposed ban on Jallikattu. (File photo/REUTERS)
Chennai: Tamil Nadu Governor Vidyasagar Rao on Saturday approved an Ordinance on Jallikattu, paving the way for the bull-taming sport to be held in the southern state.
Chief Minister O Panneerselvam, who thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for support, will inaugurate Jallikattu at Madurai’s Alanganallur, famous for conducting the rural sport, at 10 am.
In other areas, ministers from the respective regions will inaugurate the sport at 11 am, Panneerselvam said.
"I urge the youths, students and the general public to make Jallikattu events across Tamil Nadu a grand success by participating in large numbers," he said.
As the state-wide protests, including at the Marina Beach, entered the fifth day, Panneerselvam said the assent of President Pranab Mukherjee to amend the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 by Tamil Nadu was received on Friday night.
"The assent for the ordinance (amending the PCA Act) has been obtained from Governor also," he said, adding, "our dream to conduct Jallikattu this year has come true."
He said a draft Bill to replace the ordinance and amend the PCA Act paving the way for holding Jallikattu without any hindrance will be introduced and adopted in the Tamil Nadu Assembly's session which begins on January 23.
Tamil Nadu Education Minister K Pandiarajan has told CNN-News18 that the state is also exploring legal options to ban the People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). “We will also work towards banning PETA. That’s the other commitment we have made and we will work towards it. We are exploring all legal options. We don’t want to take any step that gets struck down in the court of law... As our general secretary Chinamma (AIADMK chief VK Sasikala) has committed, it will happen,” Pandiarajan said.
Many students who gathered at the Marina Beach here said they would wait for Jallikattu to officially commence before they start dispersing.
Several people across the state welcomed the decision, saying Jallikattu was part of Tamil culture and steps should be taken immediately to make it a permanent feature.
Against the backdrop of the sport being held based on directions of the Supreme Court, the central government had notified bulls under section 22 of the PCA Act, 1960.
It prohibited training and exhibiting bulls as performing animals and following that in 2014 Supreme Court altogether banned the sport.
The apex court had also struck down the 2009 Act of Tamil Nadu government regulating Jallikattu holding it repugnant to the PCA Act 1960.
Tamil Nadu had been knocking on the doors of the apex court and filed a review petition against the ban which was also dismissed by the top court in December last.
In 2015, AIADMK MPs had spoken in Parliament batting for an amendment by the Centre to allow Jallikattu. However, since that was not done, then CM Jayalalithaa had urged promulgation of an Ordinance on December 22, 2015 to allow the sport.
Following such efforts, the Centre had issued a notification on January 7, 2016 allowing Jallikattu which was subsequently stayed by the Supreme Court.
(With PTI inputs)
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