Jallikattu: Centre hopes to tame crisis by today or tomorrow
Truckers, actors and advocates join protests to demand lifting of ban on Jallikattu
Hardnews Bureau Delhi
As massive protests by students and youth demanding lifting of the ban on Jallikattu entered the third day today, Union Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave said that an Ordinance to amend the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act was with the Home Ministry and expressed hope that the government will find a solution to the crisis soon. "By today evening or tomorrow, we'll be able to reach to a conclusion about Jallikattu," said Dave while talking to the press in Delhi.
"We respect the sentiments of people and the cultural values of Tamil Nadu. We hope to come to a conclusion in the shortest possible time," Dave said.
The statement came after Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam met Prime Minister Narendra Modi at New Delhi and urged him to promulgate an immediate Ordinance to conduct the bull taming sport.
After the meeting, Modi tweeted, ''While appreciating the cultural significance of Jallikattu, the Prime Minister observed that the matter is presently sub-judice.'' He also said the Centre would be supportive of steps taken by the state government.
Meanwhile, several DMK workers, including party President and Opposition Leader MK Stalin and other senior leaders, were arrested across the state when they staged a rail roko agitation in support of Jallikattu.
Police sources said that Stalin, along with other DMK workers, was arrested when he tried to block an EMU train at Mambalam railway station in the city. DMK Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi, former Union Minister Dayanidhi Maran and scores of DMK cadres were also detained at Egmore railway station in the city. Similar agitations were held across Tamil Nadu and DMK leaders, including former Ministers and MLAs, courted arrest when they tried to block trains.
More than 75,000 people, including students and youth, women and children, IT professionals, advocates and those from the film fraternity, congregated at Marina beach to protest against the Centre’s failure to take steps to hold Jallikattu, which could not be held for the third successive year during Pongal festival.
Braving chilly night and the oppressive heat during day time, the unrelenting protestors ignored the appeal made by the Chief Minister to call off the stir and said that protests would continue till the ban, imposed by the Supreme Court, was lifted. With more than 30 colleges declaring a holiday for the day, the crowd at Marina is expected to swell further.
More organisations have pledged their support to the Jallikattu protests, with truckers announcing a dawn-to-dusk strike tomorrow. The Nadigar Sangam too announced a fast tomorrow. While the protests entered the fourth day at Alanganallur in Madurai, elsewhere in the state, advocates boycotted courts and staged demonstrations and students too abstained from classes and hit the streets to demand lifting of the ban.
Earlier reports said that the Supreme Court deferred its order on Jallikattu by a week today on the request of the Centre. Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi had argued before Justice Dipak Misra that the Jallikattu judgement should be deferred by a week as the Union and state government were trying to resolve the issue.
The apex court had banned Jallikattu in 2014.