When I first read about Jallikattu being banned and all the ruckus happening because of the sport, I was curious to find out more about it. Why was this ancient old tradition being banned now? Is Jallikattu extremently dangerous? While researching about Jallikattu, I came to know about the story behind it. So lets go back in history a little bit.
History of Jallikattu
It all started 2500 years ago. There was a cattle herder going through the forest along with his cattle. Everything was pretty quite and the cow, calf and bulls were going back home in a very peaceful manner. This is when suddenly one of the bulls went astray. The herder, got worried that the bull might hurt himself and also disband his group of cattle, thereby risking the lives of other cattle and the young calves. He began chasing the bull which has run away and managed to catch it by it’s horn and calm him down. The villager were very happy with this act of bravery by the young herder, as that bull could have run into the village and could have hurt someone. The man was rewarded for his gallant bravery. This became the beginning of the Jallikattu tradition.
Over a period of time this has become a tradition for the state of Tamil nadu. The victor from Jallikattu is given a befitting reward and is also proven to be an ultimate epitome of masculinity. Now it may sound very controversial, but I rather feel that there is a little good in practicing the Jallikattu tradition. Why you ask? well first an foremost most of the population in india, practice the occupation of agriculture and animal husbandry. The bulls that bred for Jallikattu are know as ‘bos Indicus’ bulls. These bull are bred specially for the fight, therefore, they are sold at a very high price (approx 1 – 2lac) and require special attention, therefore they need to be fed with special crops and food items.
In tamil Nadu a lot of the farmers, breed these bull as their main occupation. For a city person earning a good salary you may find 1 -2 lac as a negligible amount. I mean we all spend that amount on a bike right? But for a farmer this amount is rather huge. At the same time, the crops sold to feed an indicus bull will rate higher than your normal crops. Here were talking about a good business for a lot of our population. If this tradition is banned, I am afraid to say it will put a major dent in the income of this population and I agree that it’s a very dangerous sport but given that good safety measures are taken, I don’t see why we cannot continue this centuries old tradition of India. Wrestling is also a sport that can injure anyone. But the only difference is we practice wrestling with discipline and training.
Training of the competitor can ensure the safety of this sport. Good padding for the competitors could be used and the competitors could be educated on the anatomy of the bull, which will keep them aware of the part that can be fatally damaged. If we practice this in a sophisticated manner we can continue this tradition and also ensure the betterment if the farmers.