AG has clearly put the ball in state’s court.

TN has to pass jallikattu law Attorney General Rohatgi says its only way to end impassePTI
news Jallikattu Thursday, January 19, 2017 - 19:54

The Jallikattu issue has reached an impasse with the Centre not showing any inclination to pass an ordinance, and instead saying that they will support any action taken by Tamil Nadu government.

In a first ever statement giving clarity to how the impasse can be broken, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told Sanket Upadhyay of CNN-News 18 that the state can pass its own law.

In clear terms, the AG said that sports is a state subject and TN has all rights to make a law allowing the sport. He however added that the law should address the element of cruelty in the sport and impose strict punishment and penalty or both.

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said, “A lot of people revere the bull, it is not as if they want to kill the bull. Under the Constitution of India, there are separately demarcated areas where the Parliament has the right to make laws in several subjects, and similarly the state legislature has the right to exclusively make laws on certain subjects. Sports falls within the domain of the state, it does not fall within the domain of the Centre. Cruelty to animals falls within the domain of the Centre and that is why there is an act on it. 

So, if the state is desirous of allowing or promoting this sport, the state must bring out a law, if it so chooses. And the law must concern and take into account all the concerns of cruelty. These have been expressed by the central act and by the judgement of the Supreme Court in 2014. That is the way out of the impasse. Very strict conditions and penalties must be laid down, if the state does desire to make such a law. If anybody exercises any cruelty like throwing stones, using knives or hitting the bulls, that could be termed as a crime and there could be punishment. 

The Supreme Court was really testing the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. SC said you cannot have cruelty to animals and the way Jallikattu is performed, it appeared there will be cruelty. If the state drafted law addresses the issues of cruelty, it will still be challenged in the Supreme Court, but the apex court cannot say that a state cannot have its own law.”