MADURAI: Condemning the Supreme Court’s ban on Jallikattu, MDMK leader Vaiko on Thursday charged the People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) with attempting to eliminate the native cattle breeds from the country.
“The US-based organisation, PETA, is making a veiled move to bring the foreign cattle breeds into the country which is why it is opposing Jallikattu, the ancient Tamil sport sport, tooth and nail. The ban on the sport will have a spiraling effect on the rearing of bulls by the farmers,” he claimed.
Addressing mediapersons here on Thursday, Vaiko pointed out that the people of Tamil Nadu perform poojas for the cows and bulls during the pongal festival as a mark of respect and gratitude, but PETA is demeaning their tradition and culture by its sustained campaign claiming that the animals are tortured.
On the notification issued by the BJP-led government to allow the conduct of the sport, which was stayed by the Supreme Court subsequently, the MDMK leader opined, “The Centre should have brought an amendment to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 and removed the bull from the list of non-performing animals.”
To express solidarity with the farming community pained over the ban on Jallikattu, the People’s Welfare Alliance (PWA), he said, would observe a fast in Madurai, the sport’s prime venue, on January 17, a day after ‘Mattu’ Pongal.
“The PWA has chosen January 17 for the hunger strike in the city because it is the day Jallikattu was proposed to be held in Alanganallur,” he said.
Later, he along with Madurai CPM legislator R Annadurai and representatives of the constituent parties, inspected the venue along the Ring Road near Othakadai where the PWA meet is to be held on January 26.