One of the most talked issues in the southern part of India is the ban imposed on jallikattu by the Supreme Court (SC). Following the ban, students across Tamil Nadu started protesting. This was a surprise to many, as students have never participated in this large scale for a protest. The youth were passive participants for most of the incidents and events.
The protest in Tamil Nadu is purely led by students and youth working in IT companies. There were attempts from political parties and other groups to join this but they strongly opposed it. They want the country to recognise that the voice and strength of the youth are not something that should be undermined. The start of this protest was at Marina Beach, Chennai but soon spread over to differents parts of the state and all of them lead by students and youth.
They believe that people who are opposing jallikattu are those people who don’t really understand what jallikattu is. They wish to tell people that jallikattu is not bull fighting but bull embrasing. They suspect that PETA had a role in confusing the media and people that jallikattu is bull fighting.
“Regulate the sport, punish the violators, conduct the sport and save the tradition,” says Ram Subash, a student.
While some people believe that ban on jallikattu was unjust, there are some people who support the decision of the SC.
The majority of the youth in this state want the ban on jallikattu to be removed and want an amendment in the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act (PCA Act), 1960.
People are enraged with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), an American based animal rights organisation. Pradeep, a student from Rajalakshmi Engineering College says, “Does anyone know how PETA works? They take in animals and provide them with shelter and for those they can’t find proper shelter for, they kill it in the name of euthanasia.”
Some believe that this is a massive business idea formulated by foreign MNC’s and PETA. They say that PETA wants to help foreign countries sell their jersey cows (a certain breed) in India and hence their support for ban.
The youngsters believe jallikattu to be a part of their tradition and culture and the ban on it could bring in dire consequences. They say that the protest is not only for safeguarding their culture and tradition but a fight to protect the people of India from being a pawn to the profitable business that MNC’s are planning which they plan to do by providing A1 milk producing cows which is not even consumed by them. There has been no evidence so far to support the involvement of PETA or any MNC’s.
The students are supported by the actors, sportspersons, and locals. The protest is gaining momentum as each day passes. They have decided to keep protesting until the government or court takes some strong action to resolve this issue. The youth have been admired for conducting such a vast protest without causing any kind of disruption or violence. They take pride that there has been no harm caused to women protesters and for not having disrupted the life of other people.
This is a protest led by educated youth and the students who have no plans to back down until they have achieved their goal. The future of this country has stood tall to fight for a cause that they believe in and have decided to not give up until the ban is revoked and amendments are made.
An ordinance was passed by the central government over the ban on jallikattu. The Chief Minister of Tamil Nada O.Panneerselvam met Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the issue and had submitted the ordinance. The ordinance was passed by the Centre and was sent over to President Pranab Mukherjee for his assent. The president needs to sign and pass it over to the Governor of Tamil Nadu who will then implement it. The protesters at Marina Beach stands strong that they shall only stop the protest after the ordinance is implemented.
The battle between the youth and PETA, MNC’s and SC prevails.