The government of Tamil Nadu has issued an order to withdraw the cases registered against 26,460 persons during the Jallikattu protest in January 2017. A total of 308 cases were filed across Tamil Nadu during the protests.
The order was issued on Saturday and said that appropriate action to withdraw all 308 cases will be taken by the authorities based on whether the case is under investigation or pending trial. Of the 308 cases, 281 are under investigation and 27 cases are pending trial. The order comes after the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu announced in the state assembly on February 5 that the government will withdraw all cases registered during the protest except those that caused damage to police vehicles and cases where the police were attacked.
Of the 308 cases, two cases have sections of the Railways Act added to them for which the state government will have to obtain the concurrence of the Union government to withdraw prosecution. For cases that are pending trial, the Assistant Public Prosecutor in charge of the cases has been directed to file the necessary documents to suspend prosecution. For cases that are under investigation, the police concerned have been directed to drop the cases.
The protest against the ban on Jallikattu was held across Tamil Nadu in January 2017. Thousands of people congregated at Chennaiās Marina beach to express their opposition to the ban. The ban was seen as an attempt to attack Tamil culture of which Jallikattu has been an integral part over the years. The protest eventually ended in violence after clashes broke out between the police and a section of the people at Marina. Vehicles were burnt and the city also reported severe traffic snarls in the immediate aftermath of the violence. The state government had then passed an ordinance in 2017 to allow Jallikattu to be performed in Tamil Nadu, which was cleared by the Union government.