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  India   Supreme Court set to hear plea against jallikattu today

Supreme Court set to hear plea against jallikattu today

Published : Jan 12, 2016, 1:55 am IST
Updated : Jan 12, 2016, 1:55 am IST

With the Animal Welfare Board and 12 others challenging the Centre’s decision to allow holding of jallikattu (taming the bull) in Tamil Nadu, the Supreme Court agreed to hear these petitions on Tuesda

With the Animal Welfare Board and 12 others challenging the Centre’s decision to allow holding of jallikattu (taming the bull) in Tamil Nadu, the Supreme Court agreed to hear these petitions on Tuesday thereby putting a question mark on the euphoria created in the state over jallikattu.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice T.S. Thakur directed the matter to be listed before an appropriate bench after hearing senior counsel K.K. Venugopal, Anand Grover and others who made a mention about the urgency as jallikattu is slated to begin this week during Pongal.

 

All petitions have asked for the Central government’s notification of 7 January 2016, permitting the use of bulls in jallikattu in Tamil Nadu, and bullock cart races elsewhere in the country, to be struck down. The grievance of the petitioners is that this notification has the effect of squarely violating the judgment. They said by the notification, dated January 7, 2016, the government has allowed the use of bulls and their exhibition and training as performing animals, in events such as jallikattu at Tamil Nadu and bullock cart races elsewhere in the country, on the ground that these are cultural and traditional practices, and that all care will be taken to ensure that there is no cruelty.

 

It is the case of the petitioners that in doing so the Central government has acted in violation of the judgment passed by this court, which had, after detailed examination, held that the use of bulls as performing animals in these events is inherently cruel, because bulls, bullocks etc. are not anatomically suited to run or race, and suffer acute stress, strain, fear and distress when forced to participate in such events. The court had held in 2014 that no amount of regulation can ever ensure a cruelty-free event involving bulls bullocks etc.

The court had also held that when alleged culture and tradition, such as Sati, or Jallikattu, or bullock cart races are violative of laws enacted by Parliament, they must bow down before the law of the land. The petitioners’ stand further is that these events, held to be illegal and violative of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, and of Articles 51A(g) and (h) of the Constitution by the Supreme Court cannot be allowed through such Executive action on the part of the government.

 

Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi