Jallikattu Festival

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Jallikattu festival

Jallikattu, more than 2,000 years old, is considered to be one of the oldest sports still practised in the modern era. The bull-taming sport is usually played during the harvesting festival of the state, Pongal, before which hundreds of bulls are specifically identified, trained and nourished for the sporting event. Unlike bullfighting in Spain, in Jallikattu the bull is not killed and the contestants are not supposed to use any weapons. Thousands of men in the state chase bulls to grab prizes tied to their specially-sharpened horns. The idea is to dominate and tame the animals. As part of the tradition, after the event weak bulls are used for agricultural purposes, while the stronger ones are used to breed cows, so that the wild nature of the bulls were inherited in the next generation.

Karthikeya Sivasenapathy is a social activist working on Bio-Diversity, Environment, Native Livestock, Tamil culture & Language and Social Justice. He is the Managing Trustee of Senaapathy Kangayam Cattle Research Foundation and Inthinai. He has been working on creating awareness and sustainability of the livestock based farming system. There has been a movement towards Native cattle, Tamilnadu Livestock and Zero budget / Zero input farming. He is the one who is raising voice for saving Native Breed Cattles and for Jallikattu particularly among youth.


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