1. JalliKattu: Guidelines by SC + Government
  2. Anayottam race
  3. Anavaal pidi Ritual

In this article, we shall see certain South Indian festivals.

JalliKattu: Guidelines by SC + Government

UPDATE: In May 2014, SC Banned Jallikattu altogether, this article was written before that happened.
Q.What is Jaliikattu? List the guidelines set by Supreme court (SC) and Government of India(GoI) for organizing of this festival. (200 words)


  • Jaliikattu is a bull taming sport
  • organised in the January-July period as part of Pongal harvest festival celebration since the Sangam age.
  • Coin bags & other prizes are tied to bull’s horn, then bull is made to run through a narrow passage, men try to tame it and grab the prizes.
  • Earlier, Animal welfare board of India and PETA filled separate petitions in Supreme Court, demanding complete ban of Jaliikattu since it involves cruelty to animals.

SC Direction:

  • Hold Jallikattu five months a year but only after permission from District Collector.
  • Bulls must be monitored by Animal welfare board officers to ensure no steroids or performance enhancing drugs are given.
  • Only 4 men against 1 bull.
  • Don’t allow Spectators in the ring.
  • Double barricades to protect innocent bystanders.
  • Medical teams to treat the wounded men and animals.

Guidelines by GoI

  • 2011: Environment ministry issued notification banning the exhibition & training of Bulls as performing animals. Although in 2014, Removed Bulls from that list.
  • In addition to the SC guidelines, Government directed district administration to ensure no unnecessary harm was caused to bulls.
  • Organisers have to deposit Rs.5 lakh and Rs.2 lakh for each death and serious injury case respectively.
  • Physical examination of Bulls before the event, ensure no steroids or drugs are given to the bulls.

~220 words.

Side notes

Jallikattu Supreme court ban
Jallikatu= “Salli” kassu (coins) + “Kattu” (meaning a package) tied to the horns of the bulls as the prize money.

Timeline of Events
2008 Animal welfare board of India filled case in SC, asking for complete ban of Jallikattu under Prevention of Cruelty to animals act.
2008-09 SC bans Jallikattu festival.
2009 Tamilnadu enacts a law to regulate Jallikattu (so they can ask SC to revoke the ban.)
2013 PETA reports that despite SC guideline and Tamilandu Act, the cruelty continues. For example, to ensure bull behaves aggressively, organizers injure its tail, put chilli powder in its eyes, they even feed desi liquor to the bull. When bull behaves violently, crowd gangs up and beats it mercilessly. PETA made documentary, and asked SC for complete ban of this festival.

Bull as “performance animals”

  • 1998: Environment ministry banned the training and exhibition of bears, monkeys, tigers, panthers and lions
  • 2011: added Bulls in that list. (Meaning organizers cannot train bulls for Jallikattu.)
  • 10 April 2014: Removed bulls from that list. (Obvious angle = vote bank to please the rural population of TN before general election in their Constituencies).
Arguments in Court
Jallikattu advocates PETA advocates
  • This is sport and not circus performance hence Bulls shouldn’t be in the list.
  • Jallikattu has became an industry or circus- otherwise in ancient times, it was held only during Pongal, now they’re holding it 5-6 months in a year!

Interview: Culture traditions and religious sentiments apart, Do you think JalliKattu should be banned completely?

Anayottam race

Why in News? Because its held during this time!

  • It a traditional elephant race performed at Guruvayur temple at Kerala.
  • The race marks the beginning of annual Guruvayur festival in Feb-March.
  • The winning elephant gets honour to carry Thidambu (idol of Guruvayurappan) on all special occasions for one year.

Btw, Jallikattu = bull taming festival in Tamilnadu.

Anavaal pidi Ritual

  • Where? Kerala
  • What? “Catching elephant’s tail” festival.
  • Elephant is freed of chains, it bought to the temple in Kollam.
  • Devotees chase it for 100m to catch its tail.
  • Symbolism: childhood pranks of the Ganesha and Kartikeya.