As Tamil Naduâ€™s jallikattu season comes to an end, the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court has ordered the Chief Secretary to consider providing insurance for the participants of the sport from next year. The order came on a Public Interest Litigation filed by a Madurai-based advocate Muthukumar.
In his petition, he had stated that Tamil Nadu hosts jallikattu in many towns and villages and that the sport ends up injuring or killing people every year accidentally. The petitioner submitted that chariot festivals in temples are conducted after taking a Public Risk Liability Non-Industrial Insurance policy to help those who accidentally get hurt by the festival and a similar procedure must be followed while conducting jallikattu as well.
The case was heard by a division bench consisting of Justices Sasidharan and Audikesavalu on Wednesday. During the hearing, Madurai district collectorâ€™s counsel submitted that this year an insurance policy under the Central governmentâ€™s Suraksha Bhima Yojana was taken for all the bull tamers who had participated in the jallikattu that was conducted in Palamedu, Alanganallur and Avaniapuram. He also stated that from next year, efforts will be taken to insure everybody who take part directly or indirectly in jallikattu, including audience and the residents of the locality where the jallikattu takes place. The counsel also assured that in the future, permission to conduct jallikattu will be granted only if the organisers submit the copy of the policy taken for the entire event.
Accepting the submissions, the judges ordered that insurance coverage be given for everybody who takes part in the event in future and disposed the case.
Two persons were killed and around 100 people were injured in various jallikattu events that were held this year across Tamil Nadu. Jallikattu, which was earlier banned by the Supreme Court, was permitted after the Tamil Nadu government passed an ordinance in 2017 in the wake of massive protests.