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Jallikattu: Assembly passes Bill to replace Ordinance, TN simmers, protests die down

Last Modified Tuesday, 24 January 2017 (10:36 IST)
Chennai: Raging protests across Tamil Nadu seemed to be dying down as the state Assembly unanimously passed the Bill seeking to replace the Ordinance and save the sport symbolising Tamil culture and heritage. Jallikattu could not be held for the third successive year during Pongal due to the 2014 ban imposed by the following a plea by animal rights activists like and Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) citing cruelty to animals, protests started in the traditional Jallikattu areas like Avuniapuram, Palamedu and Alanganallur, the nerve centre of the bull taming event, that used to attract lakhs of tourists, including from abroad for the event every year.

As the protests intensified on January 17 at Alanganallur and the police started arresting them, a few youths gathered at Marina the next day, batting for the unique sport and sought their release. Protesters fought pitched battles with police at several pockets in Chennai, especially around the Marina Beach from where thousands were evicted, and blocked roads at various parts of the city. Agitators in various parts of the state, including those in Marina, have 'called off' their week-long agitation, but refused to leave the venue, leading to their eviction.
Earlier in the day, the Madras High Court declined to 'interfere in administrative matters' after its intervention was sought into the early morning police crackdown on bull taming supporters at the Marina beach front. Those protesting refused to budge demanding a permanent solution to their traditional sport issue, before moving to the sea shore with their demand. As the protestors stayed put at the beach, braving chilly nights, a large posse of policemen, who were posted, started removing them since early this morning, while advising them, including women, who had come with their children, to disperse. Thousands of people started converging on the Marina beach front--the magnitude of the congregation was unprecedented both in scale and nature and the one that was never witnessed in Tamil Nadu's history--as the crowd kept swelling with every passing second.
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