A gripping session on Jallikattu and the need of preserving native cattle breeds was hosted at the Dr.G.R.Damodaran College of Science (School of Communication). The keynote speaker for the session was Mr. Karthikeya Sivasenapathy, Founder/Managing Trustee of Senaapathy Kangeyam Cattle Research Foundation. A non-profit organization working tirelessly for conserving the native cattle breeds. Karthikeya Sivasenapathy is an expert in the field of breeding native cattle and an ardent supporter of Jallikattu.
Today at the event, special guest, Karthikeya Sivasenapathy addressed the students regarding the facts behind Jallikattu, known as 'Yeruthaluvudhal' in Tamil and also elaborated on the 'hidden' motives behind the ban. He emphasized that Jallikattu was practiced since 16th century. Bull taming was very common among the ancient people, the 'Aayars' who lived in the ‘Mullai’ geographical division of the ancient Tamil Nadu. Jallikattu, was considered to be a platform for the youth to display their bravery and show their unconditional love towards cattle. The prize money was introduced to motivate the participants and encourage them to breed cattle.
At the commencement of the event, the Bulls will be released to the arena through the entry gate called 'Vaadivaasal'. Later the participant has to hold the hump of the bull which is refereed as embracing the bull, for 30 seconds. If the bull crosses the boundary line, it will be left. If a contestant can embrace the bull for 30 seconds. he will be declared as a winner. During this sport, bulls are definitely not bullied' clarified Karthikeya.
He strongly slammed the organisations like blue cross, PETA, CUPA, FIAPO for their baseless allegations against Jallikattu and personal gains. 'Prior to 2009, yes, a few bad things happened during the conduct of Jallikattu. After which, the Tamil Nadu Jallikattu Regularization Act was passed. The bulls participating in the sport were put through a pre event test where the bulls are checked under 14 para-metrics and medical tests. The participating bulls will be provided with a docket number, kind-of-a identification number. This ensures utmost transparency of the sport with no chance of torturing the animal or putting its life in risk. Indeed, a copy of all these reports have been sent to blue cross, PETA ,CUPA, FIAPO for clarification, but still they continue to show their denial. Since 2009, no human deaths have been recorded during the event' Karthikeya. said.
'It's highly alarming that the 130 cattle breeds that thrived in our nation have shockingly reduced to just 37 breeds. Unless we engage and support the traditional livestock keepers, we are certain to lose these 37 breeds as well' he said. Karthikeyan also questioned the genuineness of PETA. And, that the organization kills 86% of animals under their care as their funds are broadly spent on investigation, research and self-advertisement instead of caring for animals. He also revealed the international conspiracy behind the ban citing the impact on natural farming, increase in India's beef export and the sudden interest of multi-national companies in dairy industry.
He also shared the evidence submitted by the protesters in Supreme Court are from events held prior to formation of Tamil Nadu Regulation of Jallikattu Act. The number of animals harmed are very fractional compared to the total bull participation. He also raised question that how castrating bulls and bulls sent to slaughter houses for beef are less cruel compared to bulls running for 15 meters once in a year, during the Jallikattu event?. The ban on this sport is done to kill the last of the country breeds of cattle and to introduce western breeds during the course of time. He insisted the students to be aware of the facts behind Jallikattu and to extend their support for the sport.
Undoubtedly, the students enjoyed every minute of his speech. Enthralled by his speech, the students felt it was definitely an eye-opener session as the myths and baseless allegations against Jallikattu were explained in detail by an expert. Dr. Radha, Head of Visual Communication Department along with staff members of other departments attended the session.
The Supreme Court passed orders to ban Jallikattu in 2014. Since then the people of Tamil Nadu especially the cattle breeders have been fighting tough to release he ban and allow them to conduct Jallikattu, the traditional and cultural symbol of Tamils. Cattle breeders, common man, farmers, political outfits, students, film fraternities and other social organisations have put-forth their genuine plea to the Supreme court to release the ban and allow them to conduct the traditional sport. However, till date no favorable response has been received for the review petitions filed seeking release of ban.