Despite police campaign against involving animals in such events, youth turn out in large numbers saying the rural sport is a display of valour

The ‘Pasuvula Panduga’ observed every year with great pomp on the occasion of ‘Kanuma’ festival at Arepalle Rangampeta village in Chandragiri mandal passed off peacefully on Tuesday.

The event is conducted on the lines of the famous ‘Jallikattu’ of Madurai area in Tamil Nadu, but certainly on a low profile, both in terms of ferocity and public participation. The ‘mock bullfight’ was in the eye of a storm for over a week with the Police Department trying to wean off the young aspirants by holding a campaign against its conduct. By sticking wall posters and distributing leaflets among the residents continuously, the officials tried their best to spread awareness on the ban existing on involving animals in such fights. However, the morale was not at all down due to the preventive measures, as could be witnessed from the impressive turnout of youth from the neighbouring villages and even mandals. The organisers too were in no mood to relent, pointing out that the rural sport was a form of displaying valour, and reassured that no harm would be done to the animals.

20 suffer injuries

Once the gates were opened and the bulls let out of the enclosures, they were on a sprinting spree, making the youth run helter-skelter. Only a few could muster courage to hold them by their horns. Around 20 youngsters suffered minor to medium injuries in the melee.

Meanwhile, film actor N. Balakrishna, who is camping at the residence of TDP president Nara Chandrababu Naidu in the adjoining Naravaripalle village, visited Pullaiahgaripalle, obviously to get a feel of the festive atmosphere. Balayya’s son-in-law Nara Lokesh accompanied him to the villages in the vicinity during the last two days. It was in this village that a bull lost grip and reportedly jumped onto a television OB van and smashed its windscreens.