No sports till permanent solution for jallikattu: Protesters shut down rekla races in Coimbatore
Pro-jallikattu protesters across the state of Tamil Nadu have refused to accept the ordinance promulgated by the state government as a cause to wind up protests, demanding that a permanent solution be made immediately instead. In Coimbatore, protesters disrupted rekla races (cart races involving bulls), held near the CODISSIA Grounds, with the demand that no sport events be conducted until a permanent solution for jallikattu is found.
The rekla race event, organised on behalf of the Coimbatore Tamil Nadu Jallikattu Association, was flagged off by the state Local Administration Minister SP Velumani. Assembly Deputy Speaker Pollachi V Jayaram was also present at the event.
However, barely had the event begun, and three carts left the starting point of the event, when a large number of students arrived at the venue and began a sit-in protest. When initial attempts to persuade students to allow the event to continue failed, the Minister and the Deputy Speaker left the venue.
Following this, city Police Commissioner Amalraj continued attempts to mediate with the students to find a way for the event to continue. Declaring that the police were respectful of the rights of protesters, and would not seek to immediately clamp down on their protests, the police tried to bring the situation to an amicable close. However, the protesting students were adamant that races could be held only after a permanent solution to jallikattu was found.
Eventually, some protesters were detained by the police. However, protests intensified after this, with protesters targeting and damaging posters of the ruling AIADMK, and shouting slogans against the state government and the central government.