The organisers of the jallikattu were quick to deny that a woman was the reward, and they said the announcer was under the influence of alcohol.

Jallikattu announcer offers woman as prize along with bull triggers outrage
news Controversy Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 12:40

A video clip showing a jallikattu announcer saying that a 21-year-old woman would be offered as the prize to the winner has emerged, triggering anger and disbelief.

The announcer, 70-year-old Palanisamy, is heard saying in the video that whoever catches the bull can lay claim to the woman who brought the bull with her. Yes, that's a lot of bull in one sentence.

 Because cash prizes, veshtis, a Renault car, a woman – what’s the difference really, eh?

In the video, 70-year-old Palanisamy is first seen playing a thandora – a traditional instrument used to draw attention – before he makes the announcement. As people slowly gather around him, he begins speaking – half slurring, half shouting.

He starts by saying, “This coming Sunday, there is going to be a mega jallikattu taking place in Periya Anaikaraipatti. A 21 year-old girl from Mettupatti, an unmarried girl, is bringing a cow. For the man who catches the cow, the girl is free, the cow is free!”

Setting the rules for this illegal sale of persons, the man then goes on to say that there must be one clear winner. Multiple men cannot lay claim to the woman. “For the man who catches the bull, the girl is free, the cow is free! Anyone can catch (the bull). But don't think that just because anyone can catch it, four people can catch the cow and claim the girl.”

Championing the bravery of the men as well as extolling the virtues of monogamy all in one impassioned announcement, he says, “The girl is only for the one man who can catch the bull.”

In one final flourish, before he takes his leave, he reminds the people not to forget the event. He then lists the other rewards that winners can claim: “They are giving veshtis, gold coins and many items!”

According to a report in The Hindu, the organisers denied the existence of such an offer; they also said that the man was apparently under the influence of alcohol.

Ending the high drama on Sunday, the organisers took Palanisamy to the Vaiyampatti police station where he apologised.

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