As many as 76 people have been injured across Tamil Nadu by day three of the bull-taming festival, Jallikattu, according to reports.
Nineteen people were injured at the Palamedu district edition of the festival on Wednesday, reported News Today. As many as 165 bulls had been released for the event which was inaugurated by All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) MLA Manickam.
"Jallikattu events organised in Palamedu and Alanganallur are world famous," Manickam told ANI.
The Tamil Nadu government had identified places in the state where the festival could be held on various dates through January. Jallikattu was held and is going to be organised at Thachankurichi, Vadamalpur, Keelapanaiyur, Viralimalai, Vanniyanvidhuthi and Mangathevanpatti, among other sites.
On Monday, the first day of the celebrations, as many as 13 people were injured at Thachankurichi village in the Gandarvakottai taluk of Pudukkottai district. The event, in which 454 bulls had been released, had lasted nearly five hours and was the first of the festive events permitted by the government, reported The Hindu.
Medical teams appointed by the state government's health department had conducted screening tests on bull tamers eager to participate, after which 279 of them were allowed. Ambulances had been deployed at the venue and four of those injured on Monday had been taken to the Thanjavur Medical College for preliminary treatment. Nine others were released after receiving first aid.
At the Avaniyapuram jallikattu event, organised by Madurai district administration and directed by the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court, as many as 44 people, including bull tamers, handlers and the general public, were injured. Eight of the injured were sent to the Government Rajaji Hospital in the district, and are stated to be out of danger, reported The News Minute.
In a first-of-its-kind scheme, the Madurai district administration had asked bull tamers entering the ring to enroll themselves in a mandatory insurance scheme with a coverage of Rs two lakh for accidental death, The Times of India had reported. The premium amount that participants had had to pay for inclusion in the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana was Rs 12.
The festival was banned by the Supreme Court in 2014 after complaints of extreme animal cruelty. In 2017, the state government brought a law to bypass the apex court's verdict, following massive protests calling for the ban to be removed.
The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 was amended for the state on the grounds that the festival is integral to the cultural tradition of the state. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) often raise their voices against the festival.
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Updated Date: Jan 16, 2019 14:42:32 IST