Preparations in full swing ahead of Jallikattu in Madurai

Madurai: With only a few days left for the festival of Pongal, the bull owners have started training their herd for the ‘Jallikattu’ which is immensely popular in the state of Tamil Nadu.

The bulls are given special treatment and are trained for the race the year-round, but with the festival fast approaching extra attention is being given to the bovine.

Around 2,000 bulls are likely to take part in various Jallikattu events all across Tamil Nadu during the Pongal festival.

One such bull owner, Azhagara Samy, says that he is training the bulls in a traditional manner and four of his bulls are ready for the Jallikattu.

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“I own four bulls, and all of them are going to participate in Jallikattu this year. I am using the Vaadivaasal set up to train them and prepare them for the big day. I am training them in the traditional manner,” Azhagarasamy told ANI.

The Supreme Court (SC) in 2014 banned ‘Jallikattu’ after a plea was filed by the Animal Welfare Board of India and the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) but the state government insisted that Jallikattu was a crucial part of its culture and identity.

The ban was later lifted in January 2017 with an amendment to the law after massive protests along the Marina beach in Chennai.

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