Madurai

Trained Red Cross volunteers save lives of injured tamers

Indian Red Cross Society volunteers provide first aid to an injured bull tamer at Palamedu in Madurai on Friday.   | Photo Credit: R. Ashok

When the jallikattu at Palamedu was progressing well on Friday, there were whistles all of a sudden around 12.30 p.m. to temporarily suspend it. Immediately, a group of volunteers of the Indian Red Cross Society (IRCS) rushed into the arena with a stretcher to carry an injured bull tamer. The tamer, who was profusely bleeding due to an injury in his arm, was immediately rushed to the nearest health facility.

Jallikattu is said to be one of the most dangerous sports, during which a large number of bull tamers get injured. During these moments, it is the volunteers from the IRCS who provide first aid to the injured tamers promptly to avoid any deaths. A team of 10 trained volunteers of IRCS provides first aid to the injured players during jallikattu events.

District secretary of IRCS M. Gopalakrishnan says the main aim of the team is to provide first aid to the injured bull tamers as soon as possible. “Most bull tamers suffer deep wounds, leading to severe blood loss. So, our aim is to ensure that we arrest blood loss to save them,” he says.

A Rajkumar, coordinator of the group, says that following the jallikattu protests of 2017, the judiciary laid emphasis on preventing fatalities during jallikattu. Hence, a team of volunteers was trained for the purpose, he adds.

Earlier, there have been instances where accidentally mud or coconut coir had infected the wounds of the injured bull tamers, says P. Rajesh Kannan, who is part of the team. “Hence, a trained team is essential to avoid such accidents,” he adds.

However, the presence of a large number of police personnel in front of the arena poses a hindrance for the volunteers to provide timely treatment. “This delays the time taken to treat the injured player. Similarly, spectators tend to block the area around the arena, delaying the time taken to reach the ambulance. These issues need to be sorted out,” a volunteer says.

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Printable version | Feb 26, 2021 4:33:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/trained-red-cross-volunteers-save-lives-of-injured-tamers/article33582948.ece

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