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65 Injured During Jallikattu Event in Tamil Nadu's Madurai

The Jallikattu at Avaniapuram held here today marks the start of the once a year bull taming sport in many rural and semi-urban regions of Tamil Nadu.


Updated:January 15, 2020, 8:09 PM IST
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65 Injured During Jallikattu Event in Tamil Nadu's Madurai
Participant trying to tame a bull during the jallikattu festival in Madurai district. (Image: Stalin/New18)

Madurai: Sixty-five people, including spectators, were injured during Jallikattu, the annual bull taming event held across Tamil Nadu on the occasion of Pongal, in Madurai district’s Avaniapuram on Wednesday.

At least four were seriously injured and rushed to the Madurai Government Hospital for treatment.

More than 700 bulls and 680 participants took part in Wednesday’s event that got underway at 8am and ended by 5pm.

As the feisty bulls, one after the other started racing towards the lengthy sporting arena from the entrance, known as 'vadivasal', young men waiting with bated breath strained every nerve to latch on to the hump of the animals.

The Jallikattu at Avaniapuram marked the start of the once-a-year bull taming sport in many rural and semi-urban regions of Tamil Nadu. Similar events will be held at Palamedu on Thursday and in Alanganallur on January 17 and these are among the hugely popular bull taming contests in the state.

If the participant manage to hang on over the hump of the bull for a determined distance, he is declared a winner and if not, the animal emerges the victor.

In each round, about 60 to 70 participants with colour coded T-shirts and shorts took part. Festivity marked the event and scores of spectators from the gallery craned their necks to have a glimpse of determined men trying to get the better of the animals in a matter of seconds as soon as they were released into the arena.

Even as the event was underway, the Supreme Court dismissed a plea seeking a ban on the traditional. The court directed the petitioner to move the Madras High Court and file a plea seeking that the bull taming sport be conducted under the supervision of the District Collector.

In January 2017, massive protests were held in Tamil Nadu seeking nod to hold Jallikattu, banned by the Supreme Court, and the sprawling Marina beach in Chennai emerged as the epicentre of the protests. Following the protests, a bill to allow the spot by amending the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 was unanimously adopted by the Tamil Nadu Assembly on January 23, 2017 after all parties welcomed the legislative initiative.

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