(Yeah!!! A long one..)
One of THE traditional sports of TamilNadu..
To explain in short, People will train bulls (from the time they were calves) for Jallikattu. The bulls will be allowed to run from a particular place. And people will attempt to catch it. If a person can hold the bull and run for a particular distance or time, then the person will be declared the winner. If nobody could, the bull will be the winner. These bulls will be used for breeding. Basically, Jallikkattu is the process of identifying cows which are stronger. And the next generation calves will be stronger and healthier as well.
Initially, this sport might have played for fun. Later, people started associating this with Pride. ie. The more confidence the owner has on his bull, the more prize they declare for the person who can win the bull. Sometimes, the owners may even give their daughters for marriage as a winning gift for the person who can win the bull. And some people take this as an opportunity to take revenge on the owner of the bull. By winning the bull, they feel like they destroyed the pride of the owner and defeated him.
When pride is involved, people will do whatever it takes to retain it. So, there may be cases where the owners give liquor/alcohol to the bulls so that they will become even more uncontrollable. Yes.. This is not a safe sport. The bulls may try to attack the people and people may get hurt. It might lead to people’s death also.
This is not a sport that was introduced a few hundred years earlier. This was being played for thousands of years. And, this is part of our Tamil culture.
Since the past 10-15 years, the animal activists say that as people are getting hurt and bulls are mistreated, they want to ban Jallikkattu. To me this seemed to be for a good cause and so I liked the ban. But, it will till I didn’t know the other side of the story..
Now the other side:
Some animal welfare organizations are imposing a ban on Jallikkattu. If the animals are their main concern, why don’t they bring a ban on Non-vegetarian food? Cows, Goats, Chicken gets killed in millions a day, all over the world.. And somewhere I heard that, when people kill animals, they’ll make the other animals to watch it. Because, this will bring fear into them and that produces some hormones in those animals. These hormones seems to improve the taste of the meat. As there is no ban on non-veg food, there should definitely be some other reason behind it..
In India, there may not be any house that doesn’t consume any of dairy products. Coffee/tea/milk/curd/butter milk/ghee/butter.. So, there is a huge market for milk in here. Market is a good place to make money. Money attracts people. And there comes some western countries who wants to make money. India has a good number of cows and they are strong. So, how can the western countries enter our market when we are self sufficient with the cows??
So, this is their analysis. List down the uses of cows. Agriculture, Milk, Jallikkattu and for food (beef). And cow dung is used as fertilizers.
Hindus worship cow as god and it is a devotional animal. Also, people consider cows as another mother for children. But, people in some other countries eat beef. Even today, if you see, 99% of the Hindus won’t eat beef. But, India having people from different cultures, they started introducing beef and some people export beef to other countries. For beef, they need cows. And they have to capture our milk market also. What they have to do? They have to minimize the use for cows.
The remaining are Agriculture, Milk and Jallikkattu.
They introduced Tractors in Agriculture. Tractors made the job of farmer easier, faster and cost effective. Also, with the invent of chemical fertilizers, cow dung is not used much in the agriculture. Now, farmers being not that rich in India, they didn’t find much use for the cows.
They introduced cows from other countries. That gives more milk (per day) and requires a big maintenance cost. Due to the big milk market, people started getting more western cows. These cows run out of milk much sooner than our Indian cows. Also, the milk they produce is not healthy for us. And, people were not aware of that. So, they slowly entered Indian Milk market.
Now Jallikkattu being the source of identifying the best bulls, and it is not completely safe, their vision turned towards Jallikkattu and this is where we are now..
Everybody knows smoking is Injurious for health. But, they didn’t ban smoking. Instead, they put strict regulations to it. Even if you take cricket, we know that players have died while playing. They didn’t ban cricket. Instead, they took precaution. Why? Because, there is lot of money involved.
Each Jallikkattu sends out a chill, down the spines of those western countries who wants to capture Indian Milk Market. That is where the animal welfare organizations come in. And now, they are trying to ban the sport.
In Spain, I think the end of bull fight is that the man kills the bull. But, in here, if a bull got injured during Jallikkattu, people consider it as a bad omen for the whole village.
Indian culture is something close to nature. It is not designed for mankind only. It is designed with the whole eco-system around mankind in mind. The practices we follow should help man and in no way disturb the eco-system in which he is in.
Pongal is a festival where we thank the entities involved in agriculture. On Pongal day, they worship and thank Sun. The next day is for the Cows. I am not sure whether there is any other country that gives this much importance to Agriculture.
When I was a kid, I used to carry an yellow cloth bag to market when I have to buy stuff. Or a stainless steel vessel for liquid items. Later came the polythene and plastic bags. Now we realize that they are harmful for nature and we are back to those older ways. Indian culture is exactly like this.
At a certain age, when our father gives us advise, we’ll think that he is old fashioned and whatever he says doesn’t suit the current time. But, when we grow older, we realize that everything he said/did was for our good and is the right thing to do. Indian culture is like the father and western culture is like the growing kid. The problem with India is that they didn’t realize that they are great. I would request other countries to learn from our traditions instead of trying to take advantage over us. Come and learn from us and we will be happy to teach you our traditions.
NEVER DARE TO TOUCH OUR TRADITIONS!! This is like keep on compressing a blown balloon. After a certain point, the pressure inside will increase and the balloon will burst and nobody will be able to make out its actual shape. And, people who are trying to touch our traditions are like the balloons.
When demonetization was announced, nobody protested. Yes.. Some people were against it. But, it was not even close to the opposition on the ban on Jallikkattu. Because, people feel that, even it is going to create some inconveniences, it is a good step toward eliminating corruption. But, we protest against the ban on Jallikkattu. Because, we know that it is NOT right.
Rules are meant for the well being of man. And to maintain the cultures. People follow rules, because they realize it is for the good. But, when you keep pressing us for something that we all know is not good, you have to be prepared for the chaos. And, you have to blame only yourself for the outcome. Because, YOU ASKED FOR IT.
If you are going to ban Jallikkattu, we’ll want to encourage the bulls and we want them to spend some quality time with its friends. So, we’ll find a place, where the owners of the bulls can come and the bulls can meet each other and have a blast. In their enjoyment, if some of the bulls ran from the meeting spot, the owners are going to ask people for help. And if somebody can get the bull, the owners will thank them with some gifts. 🙂
When you hurt nature, it will take it. This has increased in the last couple of centuries. Industries, mines, killing trees.. But, when it crosses the limit, it will come back with a vengeance. And, nobody ( I mean NOBODY) can stand against it. Once nature has shown us who is the boss, we have to start from square one. And lets try our best not to do it.
I SUPPORT JALLIKKATTU!!! Lets save Mother Nature!!!