Madurai Corporation spends Rs. 3.5 lakh for the arrangements

The stage is all set for the conduct of the district’s first ‘Jallikattu’ during this pongal season at Avaniapuram here on Tuesday. For the third year in a row, Madurai Corporation has taken upon itself the responsibility of erecting barricades and establishing spectators’ galleries at T.P.K. Road, the venue for the event, at a cost of Rs. 3.5 lakh.

S. Gangadharan, Tahsildar (Madurai South), said that a total of 501 bulls and 374 bull tamers had registered with the revenue department officials for participating in the Avaniapuram event. There were chances of some of them getting rejected during medical examination to be conducted before the start of the event scheduled to be held between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m.

“As per the rules, the bull tamers should be aged between 20 and 40. They should not be suffering from any kind of physical abnormalities or ailments. Consumption of liquor and intake of either narcotic or performance enhancement drugs could also be reasons for refusing permission to tame the bulls. Further, tamers leaving the arena in the middle of the event would not be permitted to enter again,” he said.

In so far as the bulls were concerned, S.R. Muthuram, Assistant Veterinary Surgeon, Animal Husbandry Department, said that bulls registered with the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) alone would be allowed to participate in the event. The animals should not have sustained injuries and conform to the restrictions on age, health and so on. “We would also insist on production of proof for having vaccinated the animals for foot-and-mouth disease. Animals would be rejected if the owners had applied oil and sandal paste on their horns and humps. It is mandatory that the horns should be blunt and capped. The token numbers of the bulls would be written on their horns,” he said. R. Sangili Rajan, Assistant Engineer, Madurai Corporation, said that this year the spectator gallery for VIPs had been erected with iron jockeys. Last year, the gallery erected with wooden logs had collapsed. “The work had been handed over to a contractor who has been performing it under the supervision of PWD officials,” he said.

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