January 24th, 2017
Violence erupted in Chennai on Monday after a large contingent of police tried to evict over 10,000 Jallikattu protesters from the Marina Beach. The clash between the two parties resulted in hundreds of civilians being injured.
The angry mob also incinerated at least two police stations and several police vehicles. Other videos of police burning vehicles have also surfaced. It is yet to be ascertained whether these videos are morphed as claimed by the police.
Violence in Chennai and other parts of Tamil Nadu
The severity of the Chennai incident also sparked unrest across the state with police resorting to lathi charges in Alanganallur, Erode, and Coimbatore.
Several people were arrested. However, the police did not specify the number of detentions or arrests made.
Tamil Nadu passes amendment bill
The Tamil Nadu Assembly, during a special session, unanimously passed an amendment bill on Monday evening allowing Jallikattu to be conducted without any hindrance. The State Government finally replaced an ordinance promulgated on January 21 by the Supreme Court.
Chief Minister O Panneerselvam introduced the bill in the session. It was passed by a voice vote with all opposition parties, including DMK, supporting the bill.
The PCA Act was amended defining Jallikattu as a traditional sport involving the bulls. It notified that the sport would be conducted in the state on any day between January and May. The Bill also included other sports involving bulls — Manjuviratu, Vadamadu, and Erudhuvidumvizha — performed in different parts of Tamil Nadu.
Despite the Government having paved the way for organising the sport, police rushed to various protest points across the State. The protests that were peaceful until now evolved to become violent.
Many protesters had claimed that the police force came in as early as 4 AM, in the morning, and began targeting some groups on the beach. While a large mass scattered, many started running towards the sea.
Several protesters claimed that a video – doing the rounds on social media – showed police personnel setting fire to vehicles. Chennai Police Commissioner S George said the video would be subjected to “scientific investigation” and that “radical elements had infiltrated the group of protesters”.
Bloody cops!!!! Blaming youths!!!see the truth !!!Guys share this maxVideo courtesy : Akilan Ganesan
In Nadukuppam, hundreds of fisherfolk alleged that police went from door-to-door looking for jallikattu protesters and that a fish market with 600 shops was burnt down by the police.
The Bill that was passed says that considering the vital role of Jallikattu in preserving and promoting tradition and culture among people, and also given ensuring the survival and continuance of native breeds of bulls, the “Government of Tamil Nadu has decided to exempt Jallikattu from the provisions of the PCA Act”.
Points to ponder
- It is important to find out why did the protest took a violent turn even after the Government fulfilled the wishes of the protesters, giving them an unconditional victory.