The state-wide protest demanding lifting curbs on conducting jallikattu entered fourth day and the crowd just continued to swell.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam's assurance that the bull-taming event will be conducted in a couple of days evoked mixed reactions from the protesters. While welcoming his statement, the protesters refused to give up until the event is conducted.
Chennai's Marina Beach, Madurai's Tamukkam grounds, Coimbatore's Anna Nagar link road and VOC grounds, and Alanganallur, the hotbed of the movement continued to witness surge in protesters.
The DMK's rail roko protest and traders dawn-to-dusk shutdown affected the normal life. But the protesting youngsters continued to stay away from politicians.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court agreed to the Centre's suggestion to pause the delivery of its judgment on the validity of the government's January 7, 2016 notification allowing Jallikattu for at least a week till the Centre and Tamil Nadu government resume talks to resolve the impasse amidst public volatility.
In view of unrest / demonstrations over Tamil Nadu with regard to Jallikattu and consequent to the prevailing situation, the following changes are made in the pattern of train services.
A. The following trains are diverted as detailed:
1. Train No.16856 Mangalore – Puducherry express of 20.01.2017 will be diverted to run via Erode, Tiruchchirappalli, Vriddhachalam and Villupuram.
2. Train No.16573 Yesvantpur – Puducherry express of 20.01.2017 will be diverted to run via Salem, Jolarpettai, Katpadi, Vellore and Villupuram.
3. Train No.16779 Tirupati – Rameswaram express of 20.01.2017 will be diverted to run via Tiruchchirappalli, Karaikkudi and Manamadurai.
B. The following train is cancelled:
Train No.16128 Guruvayur – Chennai Egmore express of 20.01.2017 is cancelled.
In view of unrest/demonstration over Tamil Nadu area with regard to Jallikattu and consequent to the prevailing situation, the following are the changes in pattern of Train Services.
Following the protests, Southern Railway announced full and partial cancellation of some trains, besides diversion of others. Here is the list.
Following up on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s assurance to the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvam, the Ministries of Home, Law and Environment vetted the state’s draft ordinance and cleared the amendment that will denotify the bull from the list of “performing animals“.
This will ensure that provisions of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act will not apply to the bull.
The ordinance has been forwarded to the state government, a Home Ministry spokesman said. It has been sent without the need of referring it to the President of India.
Tamil Nadu can now promulgate the Ordinance on jallikattu, it will not go to the President of India for his assent, says MHA. Central government clears draft Ordinance on Ordinance on jalliakttu to allow Tamil Nadu govt to promulgate it, says Home Ministry
The proposed ordinance that would pave way to conduct jallikattu has been cleared by Union Environment, Culture and Law Ministries.
"After consulting AG Mukul Rohatgi, Law Ministry forwards Tamil Nadu Govt's Ordinance on Jallikattu to President Pranab Mukherjee," AIADMK's official handle tweeted.
Concurrently, the Tamil Nadu government will also pass the ordinance and send to to Governor's approval.
Tamil Nadu government’s announcement that it would issue an ordinance to ensure the conduct of Jallikattu sport drew a sharp reaction from eminent jurist Soli Sorabjee who said such a move could be constitutionally invalid.
“The central government wants to consult the state government and sort it (the issue of Jallikattu) out. Very good. But to run an ordinance in these circumstances is out of the question. It will not be warranted at all,” the former Attorney General told some television channels.
He also said that an ordinance was issued when there were circumstances of “pressing nature” which required immediate action.
“I don’t think an ordinance will be constitutionally valid also, but in any case let’s wait and see what happens,” he said.
Mr. Sorabjee also discouraged the ongoing protests demanding lifting of ban on bull taming sport, saying the emotions cannot override the basic rule of law.
Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy urged the Centre to bring in an ordinance to conduct jallikattu.
Mr. Narayansamy said he had e-mailed his letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking promulgation of an ordinance to hold jallikattu which is an ancient Tamil sport.
“The Central government has full liberty to bring in an ordinance to permit the sport... ” he told reporters.
Can you guess this place in Chennai? It is Labour Statue in Marina Beach. Photo: T.K. Rohit
Music composer A.R. Rahman goes live on video-streaming app Periscope in a live stream titled "Prayers for Tamil Nadu's Happiness and a United India".
He says that he was on a fast from 4.30 a.m. and was joined by his son Ameen.
Percussionist Sivamani and composer G.V. Prakash, who is Rahman's nephew also made an appearance. G.V. Prakash, who has been an active part of the protest said that he thanked his uncle on behalf of all the Tamilians for supporting their cause.
Rahman also broke into a song Tamizha Tamizha
The Environment Ministry gave its observations to the proposal sent by the Tamil Nadu government for lifting of the ban on bull-taming sport jallikatu and returned it to the Home Ministry for final decision.
"The proposal was submitted to the Home Ministry. The Home Ministry sent it to us for comments. We gave our comments and have sent it back to the Home Ministry for further vetting," a source in the Environment Ministry said.
The development came hours after Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave said that the government wants a "permanent" solution to the jallikattu issue and a a final decision will be taken within a "day or two".
Home ministry said it was waiting for a reply from environment ministry before processing the draft ordinance submitted by Tamil Nadu government to allow jallikattu.
On Friday, several AIADMK parliamentarians met Home Minister Rajnath Singh and submitted a memorandum to allow jallikattu as a sports.
Vijaita Singh reports from New Delhi
We are waiting for law and environment ministry to give their replies, before we process the ordinance on jallikattu, said an MHA official.
State can bring an amendment on jallikattu but Centre has to agree on it as it is in the Concurrent list. So we are examing it, official said.
The Madras High Court dismissed a PIL seeking enactment of a special law with conditions by the Centre and the Tamil Nadu government for holding jallikattu, saying it cannot issue such a direction.
“The court cannot issue such a direction,” the Bench, comprising Chief Justice S K Kaul and Justice M Sundar said while hearing a petition by K K Ramesh, Managing Trustee of Tamil Nadu Centre for Public Interest Litigation.
Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said in New Delhi that the Narendra Modi government respects the culture of Tamil Nadu and is mindful of the sentiments expressed by the people in the State through a peaceful protest.
“Efforts are on to bring out a legal solution at the earliest ... I along with Environment Minister Anil Dave and Attorney General (Mukul Rohatgi) have discussed the issue. We have also talked to BJP President Amit Shah,” he told reporters here refusing to elaborate whether the state government would come up with an ordinance on the issue.
“I appreciate the patience (of the protesters) and the way this entire movement is going on, we will be able to conclude it successfully. It is a matter of time and time means not more than a day or two,” he said at a press conference in New Delhi.
Telugu film star and Jana Sena party chief K Pawan Kalyan came out in strong support of Jallikattu and cock fights saying a ban on these two was an “attack on Dravidian culture and integrity” and need to draw a for this “moralistic madness.“
“I have deep respect and reverence for our culture, animals and mother nature. Looking at the cows and roosters in my farm made me think about the ban on Jallikattu and kodipandem (cock fights) in Dakshin Bharath,” he said in a series of tweets on the issue.
Actor Mahesh Babu had also expressed his support for the protest.
The ordinance on Jallikattu will be issued after getting President's assent in a day or two, said Tamil Nadu CM O. Panneerselvam today. He asked the protestors to withdraw the agitation.
TN government submitted a draft of the ordinance to Union Home Ministry.
When asked if Jallikattu will be back again, Mr. Panneerselvam said, "It will happen as per your wish."
Pressing for an ordinance for conducting Jallikattu, AIADMK MPs today met Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, who assured them that the Centre will take action so that the Tamil Nadu government could promulgate it in the next few days.
The MPs, led by Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker M Thambidurai, requested the Home Minister to intervene to ensure promulgation of an ordinance to end the ban on the conduct of Jallikattu.
In a memorandum, the AIADMK MPs said that the ban on Jallikattu is against the fundamental, religious and cultural rights of the people of Tamil Nadu, especially when such bulls and cows are treated as a part of their own family and are worshipped and no way they are being ill-treated.
Stalin, also Opposition leader in the Tamil Nadu Assembly, was detained along with scores of supporters when he staged a rail blockade at suburban Mambalam Railway Station.
Other DMK leaders, including party MP Kanimozhi and former union minister Dayanidhi Maran, as also senior leaders, participated in the state-wide rail roko held by the party.
Suburban and MRTS train services were disrupted partially since Friday morning.
Except buses, all vehicles were plying through Marina Beach road.
Nadigar Sangam staged a silent protest at the Sangam grounds in T. Nagar. Actors Ajith, Surya, Trisha and others participated. Nadigar Sangam President Nasser wanted the coverage to be on student protests and didn't allow media into the grounds.
Tamil Nadu Teachers' Association welcomes students' protest.
Delhi University Tamil Students Forum protest for Jallikattu with placards saying "Resign, TN MPs, you failed".
Pro-Jallikattu protesters took to Jantar Mantar as well.
Tamil community in Shell colony, Chembur protested against the ban on Jalikattu, reports Prashant Nakwe .
Students formed a human chain in Mumbai.
Sundar Subbiah reports:
Madurai remains cut off from rail connectivity for second day. No arrival or departure from Madurai railway junction.
The city police appealed to student protesters to disperse from Tamukkam as the Chief Minister O. Pannerselvam has assured to conduct Jallikattu in two days. However, students said that they would not give up their protest till the bulls are released through the vadivasal in Jallikattu arena.
Railway authorities arranged for free food for some fifty passengers who were stranded at Madurai Railway junction.
Pon Vasanth Arunachalam reports:
Majority of shops, barring few tea shops here and there, remain closed. Few autorickshaws and government buses are plying on the roads.
Core committee members of the protests in Alanganallur resolute that the protests will not be given up until Jallikattu happens at Alanganallur. They say that big LED screens will be set up at all the protest venues to watch Jallikattu, following which the protesters will peacefully disperse.
Madurai Collector K. Veera Raghava Rao visited Alanganallur. He said, "There are no instructions so far from the government yet to make arrangements for conducting Jallikattu. However, district administration is well-prepared to immediately act on any instructions."
With crowd swelling at Alanganallur, compared to the last couple of days, there was more demand for food and water. Food was supplied from a mini-truck at the protest venue.
R. Rajaram reports:
DMK cadres staged rail roko at Tiruchi railway junction demanding Jalikattu and ban on PETA. The cadre broke the security cordon at the station and blocked the Chennai-bound Cholan express from Tiruchi, resulting in the delayed departure of the train by about 30 minutes.
Traders downed shutters in Tiruchi expressing their solidarity to the agitations. Buses, both government and private plied as usual in the city and to mofussil areas. However, autos, goods carriers and private taxis were off the roads.
Protests by students and other outfits demanding Jalikattu continued in the city. Several Chennai-bound trains from South were diverted via Karaikudi in the late hours on Thursday. The Chennai-bound Pallavan express from Tiruchi had a late start on Friday morning.
B. Velankanni Raj reports:
Jallikattu supporters made a sand art of a bull at the banks of river Cauvery.
C. Jaisankar reports:
People throng MGR statue. Hundreds of traders, welfare associations, businessmen, political groups, families, farmers, merchants, lawyers, doctors and others took out rallies.
Wilson Thomas reports:
The protest intensified in Coimbatore as more people joined at VOC Ground. The fourth day of the protest marked solidarity extended by traders, farmers forums, hotels and bakery owners.
Lawyers practicing at courts in Coimbatore stayed away from work on Friday bringing court proceedings to a standstill.
Members of a core group which is leading the protest in Coimbatore said that they are expecting 30,000 people to participate. On Thursday, the venue had witnessed the presence of nearly 25,000 people.
Around 200 IT employees working with different companies at Keeranatham IT Park in Coimbatore also protested.
Traffic flow on Avinashi Road, LIC Road and Park Gate Junction were affected as protesters thronged on the roads.
Several software employees in Mysuru gathered outside the Deputy Commissioner's office to register their protest against the ban on Jallikattu.
More than 85% of the shops in Tirunelveli district remained closed. Only 25% of the autos were plying. Most of the private schools remain closed while conducting special classes for 10, 11 and 12th standards. A few bike and auto rallies have been planned in the district.
Students of Veterinary College and Research Institute at Ramaiyanpatti protest near Tirunelveli.
Bandh call given by the traders, trade unions and hoteliers in support of Jallikattu on Friday has evoked mixed response at Kancheepuram.
Vegetable and fish vending stalls, jewellery shops, tea stalls, hotels and other shops and establishments downed shutters. Cinema houses too suspended morning and noon shows.
However medical shops, electricity and water supply was not affected as they were exempted from the bandh. - PTI
S. Prasad reports:
Complete shutdown in Puducherry. All shops and commercial establishments remained closed to express their solidarity. The ruling Congress extended its support for the bandh.
200 private buses and 80 mini buses were off the road in support of Jallikattu in Dindigul. Traders down shutters.
Hundreds of DMK cadres picket Chennai-bound Vaigai Express at Dindigul railway station in support of Jallikattu.
D.J. Walter Scott reports:
Traders and shoppers pledged their support for Jallikattu as they downed shutters expressing solidarity. More than 60% of shops, hotels, textile and jewellery shops were closed in the district responding to the call given by the district chamber of commerce.
A large number of people gathered to protest on the third consecutive day against the PETA and lift the ban on Jallikattu, in front of Salem collectorate, reports E. Lakshmi Narayanan.
Trains plying via Salem suspended.