Was the Jallikattu Notification a Political Gimmick ?

Centre fails to file response. Asks for more time.  

New Delhi : As part of the ongoing case against using bulls as performing animals, the Supreme Court took up the hearing of the Jallikattupetition today. During the last hearing on 12 January 2016, the Hon’bble court had stayed the Centre’s notification permitting Jallikattu. Interestingly the centre is yet to file its response and sought further time from the court. The matter is next listed for July 2016. Based on the centre’s disinterested stance in defending its own notification, a question arises about the motivation behind this notification. Was it simply to play to the gallery in light of the upcoming elections in Tamil Nadu ? Now that the political purpose has been served, the notification Issue seems to have gone into cold storage.

After convincing arguments by animal protection groups, the court, in the last hearing, had stayed the use of bulls for ‘entertainment’ and upheld its earlier 2014 order mentioning the same. During the present hearing, the Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations (FIAPO), one of the petitioners in the case, urged the court to take cognizance of the fact that sports with living beings was not the same as sports with articles, and that sentient beings need to be treated with dignity.

FIAPO was instrumental in channelizing public opinion through its campaign to ban Jallikattu. Following the January order, the Federation also set up a helpline number to stop illegal conduct of bull taming events. The number also received calls from Jallikattu supporters, many of whom changed their stance following information on cruelty to animals.

“We were able to convince the court that bulls cannot be used as performing animalsfor Jallikattu and bullock cart race. The court also observed that Jallikattuand other forms of bull racecauses considerable strain, stress and pain to the bulls. Pro Jallikattu lobbies in the state are wrongly projecting that the practice is part of our tradition and that prohibiting it will affect livelihoods of many. However, this is untrue and misleading information. Our culture of compassion and kindness does not prescribe torture of animals, and this is validated by our constitution as well” said Arpan Sharma, Director, FIAPO.

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Note:

FIAPO is India’s apex animal protection organisation. As the collective voice of the animal protection movement in India, FIAPO is the catalyst which protects the interests of animals on local and national levels – through education, research, lobbying, mobilization, training and direct action. Created for the movement, by the movement, FIAPO is India’s only national federation with 68 members and over 200 supporter organisations nationally.