January,12,2016- The Supreme Court today stayed the Centre’s notification lifting ban on controversial bull taming sport Jallikattu during the festival of Pongal in Tamil Nadu.
The Apex Court rejected the plea of Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) and Tamil Nadu that Jallikattu is part of the ancient tradition and culture and should not be stopped as there were enough safeguards provided in the January 7 notification.
Bench comprising of Justices Deepak Mishra and N V Ramana held that ,”As an interim measure, we direct that there shall be stay of notification dated January 7, 2016 issued by Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF)”. The bench also issued notice to the MoEF and Tamil Nadu on petitions filed by various bodies including Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) seeking striking down of the Centre’s notification and sought their replies within four weeks.
The petitions filed by bodies including Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) and People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India against Centre’s notification lifting ban on Jallikattu in Tamil Nadu were listed before a bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur. However, CJI Thakur referred the petitions to the bench headed by Justice Misra after Justice Banumathi, who hails from Tamil Nadu and is presently part of the CJI’s bench, recused from hearing them.
A battery of senior lawyers including K K Venugopal, Anand Grover, C A Sundaram and Siddharth Luthra sought an interim stay on MoEF’s notification citing relevant portions of the earlier apex court judgement and said that in the 21st century, an animal cannot be subjected to cruelty in the name of culture and traditions.
The four-year-old ban on holding of Jallikattu was lifted on January 8 by the Modi government in poll-bound Tamil Nadu with certain restrictions.
The decision to allow Jallikattu along with bullock cart races in other parts of the country, had come through a government notification despite strong objections by animal rights groups.
Jallikattu also known Eruthazhuvuthal is a bull taming sport played in Tamil Nadu as a part of Pongal celebrations on Mattu Pongal day.
9.6.2016- Supreme Court Ban on Jallikattu nullified by Modi Govt. with eye on Elections, Read Notification here
26.12.2015- Tamil Nadu Political Parties gearing up to Amend Law to nullify May 2014 Supreme Court ban on Jallikattu, Read Judgment