Supreme Court of India upholds bullfight ban
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, September 2007:
NEW DELHI–A three-judge bench of the Supreme Court of India
on July 27, 2007 overturned a March 9, 2007 Madras High Court
judgment dismissing a petition seeking enforcement of the Prevention
of Cruelty to Animals Act to prohibit harvest festival bullfights and
bullock cart races.
Called jallikattu, the bullfights and bullock cart races as
practiced mostly in rural Tamil Nadu somewhat resemble the mob
attacks on bulls practiced at festivals in parts of Spain, Latin
America, and South Africa.
Participants beat the bulls and throw chili powder in their
eyes, ears and mouths to enrage them, Animal Welfare Board of India
witnesses testified. Spectators and participants are often gored or
trampled to death, “and the number of injured fighters has often run
into the hundreds,” noted Reuters.
Goa SPCA chair Lynn De Souza in mid-August 2007 charged that
traditional bull-against-bull fights are continuing, though illegal,
because “Leading politicians and influential people are patronising
this game. Authorities don’t dare to act, although organising
bullfights amounts to contempt of the court,” violating a 1997
ruling by the Goa High Court. “As politicians are backing it, the
police are also reluctant to act,” De Souza told The Hindu.