Andhra Pradesh

Cockfights held in Andhra Pradesh despite ban

Cockfight in progress at an arena at Ampapuram in Krishna district.

Cockfight in progress at an arena at Ampapuram in Krishna district.

Despite a ban on the blood sport, cockfights were organised under floodlights in specially set up arenas at many villages in the State as part of the Sankranti celebrations.

Ignoring the police warnings and the efforts to wean them away from the banned activity, thousands of punters from various countries and the neighbouring States participated in the cockfights in the districts of West Godavari, Krishna, Guntur and Nellore, and in the Rajamahendravaram Urban areas.

People thronged the cockfight arenas in large numbers at Bhimavaram, Palakollu, Narsapuram, Kalla, Jangareddygudem, Kovvur, Gudivada, Kalidindi, Akiveedu, Challapalli, Dindi, Razole, Jaggannapeta, Kankipadu, Manikonda, Rajanagaram, and Gokavaram. In some villages, traffic movement was severely affected.

The villagers brought the fowls from different States and neighbouring districts and bet on them.

The organisers also arranged snacks, biryani, soft drinks, fast foods and roadside eateries at the arenas. At some places, gambling and other games were also arranged, it was learnt.

NRIs, software professionals, students, businessmen, realtors and farmers were said to have participated in the banned sport. In some villages, women too enjoyed the game. Long queues were seen at the ATM centres located in these areas.

“Sankranti is a big draw in the villages. We visit our home town and catch-up with our family and friends during the period. Cockfights are a part of the celebrations. We enjoyed the game,” said Ch. Snigdha, a software engineer, of Bhimavaram in West Godavari district.

“Apart from performing puja to the bullock carts and oxen, we offer prayers to the rain god. We also prepare traditional dishes and offer them to our ancestors. We also enjoy the cockfights along with our friends and families,” said K. Nageswara Rao, a farmer from Poranki village, on Saturday.

Crores of rupees changed hands at the arenas, as the punters invested huge amounts on rooster fights. “Cockfights will continue on ‘Kanuma’ day too,” the organisers said.

‘Highest bet’

“The highest bet was ₹10 lakh on the game that concluded in 12 minutes. The winner will get the amount as well as the dead fowl,” said S. Krishna, a punter from Chinchinada village, near Palakol.

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Printable version | May 25, 2022 5:35:41 am |