“The tendency to turn human judgements into divine commands makes religion one of the most dangerous forces in the world.”
Hoards of spectators huddle together, with expectant eyes and yearning hearts – there’s a taste of celebration in the air – in an uproar of festivities, an infuriated bull is unleashed – visibly agonized, he tries to run amuck – and is madly chased by villagers, trying to hold on to its horns for as long as possible. In this ‘sport’ of bull-taming he’s is punched, jumped on, goaded, poked and dragged to the ground.
Bloodshed on both sides in inevitable.
A 4000 year old bloodsport, Jallikattu perpetuates violence in the guise of tradition.
Although there is a national ban in India against using bulls in entertainment, the state government chooses to turn a blind eye to national law and instead clings to the Tamil Nadu Regulation of Jallikattu Act No. 27 of 2009, a state law permitting Jallikattu. While promising the enforcements of regulations, the Act looks at piecemeal changes such as ensuring barricading and limiting numbers. Thus, the cruelty that is inherent in Jallikattu, has no solution, other than a blanket ban on the practice.
Recently, Catalonia become Spain’s first mainland region to ban the centuries-old bullfighting. The Parliament of Catalonia voted against the traditional sport following a petition signed by thousands of people who say the practice is barbaric, outdated and cruelty to animals.
The populace of India is already against such archaic and barbaric ‘bull taming’ sports. If Catalonia can ban bull fighting, so can we. Culture and tradition in itself are changing entities, let them evolve to cater to the needs of the hour.