The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi’s suggestion that it refrain from passing any orders on the jallikattu ban for a week. Rohatgi said the delay would give the Union and state governments time to resolve the matter. This follows Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvam’s announcement that the bull-taming sport would be organised in a day or two.
As protests around the ban continue, Tamil Nadu officials released Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam Working President MK Stalin, after he was placed under preventive custody for halting a train during the party’s state-wide railway block, ANI reported. Stalin had urged the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam government for an all-party meeting on the matter, his sister and party colleague Kanimozhi said. A delegation of 49 AIADMK legislators are scheduled to meet Home Minister Rajnath Singh to plead the state’s case.
Panneerselvam had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday, urging him to pass an ordinance on the matter. Though Modi assured him of support from the Centre, he said the central government could not pass an ordinance on a sub-judice matter. The Supreme Court has been hearing petitions in support and against the sport since it was banned in 2014.
Protests continued across the state on Friday morning. Jallikattu supporters have been encouraged by several celebrities and politicians, who have held that the sport was an integral part of the Tamil culture. Oscar-winning composer and musician AR Rahman said he will fast today in support of the pro-jallikattu protests. Other prominent Tamil actors including Rajinikanth, Kamal Hassan, Ajith Kumar, Surya, Vijay and Vishal have voiced their support for jallikattu and have criticised animal rights NGO People for Ethical Treatment of Animals for opposing the practice.
Supporting the practice, spiritual guru Jaggi Vasudev also said the sport was played in honour of the animals and that it did not carry out any cruel practices against them or kill them. “It is not a bull fight. It is embracing the bull. You should see how bull also loves the sport and engages itself,” he told ANI.
Thousands have been gathered at Chennai’s Marina Beach since Tuesday night, demanding that the Supreme Court revoke its ban on the bull-taming sport. Protests continued across the state on Friday morning. Jallikattu supporters have been encouraged by several celebrities and politicians, who have held that the sport was an integral part of the Tamil culture. Protestors said they would not move from the beach till the restriction on the game was lifted.