People from several parts of Tamil Nadu arrived at Madurai to participate in the event.

Thousands gather at Avaniyapuram to watch jallikattu doctors keep close watch on bullsImage: Nishant Krish
news Jallikattu Sunday, February 05, 2017 - 10:19

On Sunday morning, the village of Avaniyapuram in Madurai got together to participate in and witness the first legal jallikattu since the ban on the sport in 2014, following the new law enacted by the state government recently allowing the sport to happen under strict conditions.

The Avaniyapuram jallikattu committee conducted the sport on Sunday under the new rules framed under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Tamil Nadu Amendment) Act, 2017. Hundreds of men dressed in yellow participated in the event, and tried to tame the bulls that were let out from the Vaadivasal.

The decision to hold the jallikattu in Avaniyapuram on February 5, Palamedu on February 9 and Alanganallur on February 10 was announced by the respective village heads after meeting TN CM O Pannerselvam on January 30. The three villages are the hotspots for jallikattu in Tamil Nadu.

Thanthi TV reported that this year, owing to the high interest in jallikattu following the people's movement against the ban, it wasn't just people from Avaniyapuram and nearby areas who participated in the event, but also people from many other parts of the state. Relatives of Madurai residents from other parts of the state turned up to watch as well.

Reports state that 1000 police personnel were present at the site for safety and security, along with 40 medical teams. By 9 30am, at least 8 people were reported injured.

All bulls are being tested by the medical teams before being let out. 

A participant told Sathiyam TV, “We've been gathering here since 3am. We thank the Chennai residents and students who fought for us. We also thank all the political parties who participated as well. The youth of Avaniyapuram are thankful to those who went to jail for our sake.”

Even as organizers make announcements asking participants and spectators to take a break and eat before they return, people remain at the vaadivasal.

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