COIMBATORE: Bullock cart race enthusiasts organised a rekla race in a grand manner in Kuppichi Pudur village in Anamalai on Sunday. Despite this being a violation of a Supreme Court order, police remained mute spectators and failed to halt the race or take action on the organisers.
Sources said, soon after the Supreme Court order banning the sport across TN, the association members met a senior State government minister in Chennai, who assured them that the race could be organised but it should not create other law and order problem in the village. The minister also assured them that police would not disturb them and they would not provide security for the race as it would create trouble. The Supreme Court banned the sport on May 7.
Initially, organisers denied permission to mediapersons to take photographs of the event.
T Yuvaraj, president of the association, which was not named yet, confirmed that the sport was organised without obtaining permission and requested the media not to publish the news.
“We selected a place where no TNSTC buses operate. We also spoke with the local grove owners who agreed to cooperate,” said Yuvaraj.
According to sources, as many as 566 bullocks from villages in Coimbatore and its neighboring districts and Palakkad in Kerala took part in the race. The race, organised in connection with the Mahali Amman Temple festival in the village, took place about one km from Anamalai police station.
However, none of the policemen visited the area to stop it. Towards the end of the event, when reporters raised questions, Anamalai police rushed to the spot and held enquiries.