- November 30, 2022
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
- The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked activists what they found wrong in Tamil Nadu’s jallikattu law when it protects animals from “unnecessary pain” and sought to preserve the “culture and traditions” of the people in the State.
What court said about the issue:
- A Constitution Bench led by Justice K.M. Joseph pointed to provisions in the law which calls for definitive preventive measures against cruelty to animals used in the bull-taming sport.
- The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Tamil Nadu Amendment) Act of 2017 and the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Conduct of Jallikattu) Rules of 2017 also recognised the culture and traditions of the people as a fundamental right
What is Jallikattu:
- Jallikattu is a bull taming event practiced in Tamil Nadu as a part of Pongal celebrations
- It is celebrated on Mattu Pongale the 3rd day of the four-day long harvest, Pongal.
- Jallikattu is derived from the words ‘calli’ and ‘kattu’, which means a bundle of coins is tied to the bull’s horns..
- Jallikattu is also known as eru thazhuvuthal or manju virattu.
- The Tamil word ‘Mattu’ means bull and the 3rd day of Pongal is dedicated to cattle.
- Bulls get precedence over cows because it helps in the ploughing of field, pulling their cart of goods and mating with cows to produce more offspring and in turn more production of milk.
- Bulls are brought to a common place where the ritual happens. The participants are supposed to embrace the bull’s hump and try to tame it by bringing the bull to a stop.
What is the history of Jallikattu:
- Jalikattu is believed to have been practiced since at least 2500 years.
- A seal from Indus Valley civilization depicting the practice is preserved in the National Museum, New Delhi.
- A cave painting that depicts a man trying to tame a bull is estimated to be 2500 years old by the Archaeologists.
- There are references to people enjoying witnessing and participating in Jallikattu in Silappatikaram one of the 5 great epics of Tamil classical period and 2 other ancient literary works like Kalithogai and Malaipadukadaam.
Why is Jallikattu important in Tamil culture:
- Jallikattu is considered a traditional way for the peasant community to preserve their pure-breed native bulls.
- At a time when cattle breeding is often an artificial process, conservationists and peasants argue that Jallikattu is a way to protect these male animals which are otherwise used only for meat if not for ploughing.
- Kangayam, Pulikulam, Umbalachery, Bargur and Malai Maadu are among the popular native cattle breeds used for Jallikattu. The owners of these premium breeds command respect locally.