Jallikattu held in shadow of protests in Tamil Nadu, 3 dead
Two persons were killed and scores injured during Jallikattu held on Sunday in the shadow of widespread protests as an ordinance failed to end the six-day-long agitation with Chief Minister O Panneerselvam forced to make a retreat without inaugurating the main event at Alanganallur following demand for a permanent resolution.
A protester, 48-year-old Chandramohan from Jaihindpuram, also died due to dehydration in Madurai city when he was taking part in a demonstration along with students and youths.
The traditional sport, which was banned by the Supreme Court, was organised in several parts of the state, including Rapoosal in Pudukottai district following promulgation of the ordinance on Saturday. Police said two persons were killed and 28 injured when they were gored by a bull during Jallikattu at Rapoosal in which several bulls were used and many sportsmen participated.
Protesters at Alanganallur in Madurai, however, refused to conduct the sport, steadfast in their demand for a "permanent solution" to ensure unhindered annual conduct of the sport. Panneerselvam, who had announced that he would inaugurate Jallikattu at Alanganallur, had to stay back in a hotel in Madurai following the stir there.
Later, he was expected to inaugurate Jallikattu at Natham Kovilpatti in Dindigul. However, there were protests there too, raising the same demand.
Groups of agitators continued their protests at several locations also in the state, raising the same demand. At the Marina beach, the epicentre of the stir for the last six days, protesters continued to stay put demanding a permanent solution for holding the sport besides a ban on animal rights group PETA.
Speaking to reporters at Madurai before leaving for Chennai, Panneerselvam said, "The ban on jallikattu has been removed completely, the sport will be held at Alanganallur, on a date decided by local people."
He said jallikattu was held in all parts of Tamil Nadu with the local administration and police taking all stipulated measures.
With protesters demanding a permanent solution for holding the sport and raising slogans that ordinance was only a temporary measure, Panneerselvam said, "The state's jallikattu ordinance route is permanent, robust and sustainable, will be made into a law in the coming Assembly session."
Meanwhile, the Tamil Nadu government has filed a caveat in the Supreme anticipating challenge to its ordinance allowing jallikattu in the state.