TN Assembly Passes Jallikattu Bill, Bulls Still Face Legal Hurdles
Facing fire from students and youngsters over the delay in lifting the ban on Jallikattu, the Tamil Nadu Assembly this evening passed the Jallikattu bill, making it into an Act.
Chief Minister O Paneerselvam tabled the bill and it was passed unanimously within minutes.
Earlier, a team of four students met OPS along with legal experts to seek clarifications on the bill. The students had doubts if the bill was aimed to break the agitation and only a temporary band-aid solution.
Now that the ordinance has become and act, it will be less vulnerable to challenge in a court of law. However, legal experts say that the bill can still be challenged and since there are over 70 conditions put for jallikattu to be held, a single violation can send Jallikattu for a toss. In fact, the new bill will face close legal scrutiny a challenge will almost become inevitable.
The students and protester wanted the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act to be amended to remove the bull from the list of performing animal. This is part of the bill passed by the Tamil Nadu Assembly. But amending a Central Act specific to a State will indeed throw open the flood gates for other states.
Very soon, Karnataka may amend the very same act to legalise bullock racing called Kambala; Andhra Pradesh may seek to legalise cock fight; Assam may legalise bull-bull fight – all part of local customs.
On the other side, pro-Jallikattu activists are asking if the court would also dare to ban horse racing as the horses are whipped, hit and metallic spurs are used to make it run faster. They have even gone to the extent of questioning the need to use horses to pull the carriage of the President of India; or for that matter, the need to have a regiment of horses for ceremonial purposes by the President of India.
Earlier in the day, the jallikattu protesters found themselves on the defensive as anti-social and radical elements tried to hijack the movement by triggering violence in Chennai and Alanganallur. The Ice House police station in Chennai was set on fire using petrol bombs and arson was reported in some areas giving a clear indication that anti-social elements had infiltrated the Jallikattu protest movement.
There were reports that some protesters raised anti-India and pro-Eelam slogans.
Rajesh Vishy, who was at the venue, wrote in a FB post: “I was there at Marina yesterday to see the ‘Makkalmovement’ and honestly, I was disappointed.
I went there expecting to see an amazing people’s movement but what I ended up seeing left me shocked. There were posters insulting the Indian flag, threatening to observe Republic Day as a Black Day and there were posters that used extremely abusive and vulgar language against the people’s representatives including the PM, CM and others.
To top it all, there were ‘plays’ where pathetic dialogues were used to mock at them all.
Worse, children were roaring in laughter when such acts were taking place.
Whatever the problem, you cannot do all of this. I am sure there were some anti-national elements who used this as an opportunity to create this atmosphere, but why were they not nipped in the bud by the large crowd of protestors?
People of TN have a responsibility towards the nation. Always, nation first!”
But sense soon prevailed when people like Rajanikanth, Kamal Hassan and Lawrence stepped in to calm the nerves of the students.
Sources said that the official Jallikattu would be held in Alanganallur on Feb 1.