– Gameness til the End
Protesters also pledged to boycott products of multinationals like Coke and Pepsi, as well as foreign liquor.
TNM Staff | Friday, January 20, 2017 – 22:27
With pro-Jallikattu protests intensifying across Tamil Nadu, not only have the numbers of protesters grown, but newer modes of voicing their outrage are also coming to the fore. In Karumathampatti village in the suburbs of Coimbatore district, Friday’s protest saw a large gathering participating in cockfights, another sport that is banned on the grounds of cruelty to animals.
Amidst the large crowd gathered, participants exuberantly displayed their fighting roosters, and set them against each other to loud cheers from the spectators. Multiple farmers volunteered their roosters to participate in the mock fights.
Protesters, both men and women, also participated in traditional dances , invoking the deity Vishnu for the cause of jallikattu.
Besides men of various ages, the participating crowd also included numbers of women and children. Much of the ire of protesters was directed strongly against the animal rights organisation PETA. Holding placards that sported messages such as “Kaalaimattai kattipidi, PETAvai ettimidi (Hug the bull, kick PETA)” and “PETAvai pottu midippom, jallikattai peni kaappom (We will throw down and kick PETA, and nurse jallikattu)”, the crowd enthusiastically raised slogans calling for a repeal on the ban on jallikattu.
Speakers at the event also denounced the government for interfering in their way of life. One speaker declared, “This is our path, this is the path we have chosen. We are telling the Indian government this is our agriculture, these are our cattle.”
Protesters also directed their ire at foreign companies, which they blamed for the ban on jallikattu. One of the participants in the protest said, “In front of these thousands of people we have taken a pledge that we will not drink the products of multinational companies like Coke and Pepsi. We will boycott the companies that are selling foreign liquor and enslaving us. We will make our own toddy, our own palm drinks. We will conduct cockfights. Our Tamil culture cannot be stopped by passing laws. We will act beyond those laws. This protest has seen mass participation of students, so many women have come.”