With the jallikattu issue holding centre stage, thousands of people have descended on the Marina beach in an unprecedented show of support demanding that the Supreme Court repeal the ban on the bull-taming sport.
Protests have not been limited to Chennai alone but have been reported from across the globe including London, Melbourne, Singapore, China, Russia and USA.
In the prevaling scenario, The News Minute spoke to former SC judge Justice Markandey Katju to get his views on the issue.
Katju said, “It appears that the Centre is under the impression that as long as the case is pending in Supreme Court, they cannot issue an ordinance. That impression is wrong. Even during pendency of a case, law has been changed many times. For example, when the election petition was allowed against Indira, she went to SC. When the appeal was pending, RPA act was amended by Parliament, even the Constitution was amended by Parliament.
The only way out is an ordinance to be issued by the President of India on the recommendation of the Prime Minister. An ordinance is on the same legal footing as an Act of Parliament. There can be a restriction in the ordinance that excessive cruelty should not be done to the bull.”
The streets of Chennai are filled with people of all ages and genders, fighting for jallikattu. And even as it’s clear that the protests are not instigated by any one organisation, what is also clear is that this protest is led by students.
“Students of Chennai are not acting intelligently. What's the use demonstrating at Marina beach and in the districts? They should demonstrate peacefully in front of the chief minister, MPs and MLAs. They should persuade these leaders to go to Delhi,” said Katju.
When one of the readers pointed out that if protestors are being picked up from Alanganallur, would they not be arrested if they dared to protest in front of the CM’s house, Katju said that under the law, everybody has a right to protest peacefully.
“I am not for banning PETA. Jallikattu should be permitted. Peta also goes overboard,” said Katju.