Jallikattu is a popular bull game in Tamil Nadu, especially in Madurai and Tirunelveli. It is played on MattuPongal day or along with Pongal celebrations. Private wealthy person bred the bulls for the event. The event will be attended by thousands of village people. Temple bull is considered as cattle head in a village. During important days, special prayers will be performed for the temple bull. It is celebrated for cattle and bulls as they play the main role in agriculture.
Jallikattu has been in existence since Tamil Classical period. Ancient tribes living in Mullai division celebrated Jallikattu in a grand style. The sport results in major deaths and injuries. It is said that more than two hundred people died in the last two years while playing Jallikattu. Apart from human, bulls also sustain serious injuries.
Jallikattu is conducted every year on any day between January 14 and 18. It is celebrated during Pongal time. Traditional valour and love are great qualities of Tamil culture. Jallikattu intertwines both. A young man can prove his love his proving valour. It increases his status to choose his favorite girl.
Jallikattu is famous in South India. It is popular in Allanganallur, Madurai, and Tirunvelveli. It is an ancient festival and sport in Tamil Nadu. It is almost like the Spain’s bullfight. The Bulls and men are the competitors in Jallikattu. It was a competition organized to find grooms for the bride. It was a practice held in olden days. For example, if a person wins in the Jallikattu bull fight, he will be announced as the groom for the bride. It is also referred as ManjuVirattu.
Rewards and Prizes
In the Jallikattu game, the bulls are highly bold and energetic. It will be transported from various parts of Tamil Nadu. The major breed of Jallikattu game comes from the variety called KangayamKaalai. The bull will be left in a large area where public will be allowed to trigger and irritate. They have to irritate the bull to a maximum level where it will expel its speed and anger to men standing in front. The competing people have to control the angel of the bull and bring it under his control.
It is a game allowed only for men. If the person has tamed the bull and brought under his control, he will be announced as winner of the game. Prizes and special awards will be given to participants who have tried their level best. In some areas, the prize money will be tied to the horn of bull. The player has to tame the bull and take away the money. It is the most challenging game played in South India.
Values and kinds of Bulls
There are different kinds of bulls like Jercy, Kangeyam, etc. The owners will purchase the bulls during the Pongal festival season. The cost of KangeyamKaalai will be about one lakh rupees. The owners will offer special food to the bull to make it strong and vibrant. To maintain security and safety during the festival, the Tamil Nadu government will offer complete protection to avoid violence.
Bulls that are registered under the Animal Welfare Council will be allowed to participate in the competition. The owners have to deposit at least two lakh rupees as compensation for the players. If the participants suffer from accident or injury, the compensation money will be given to the participants. The Jallikattu ring should be space and wide. It should allow both the participants and bull to move around freely. The organizer should have first aid medical kit and emergencies on hand. If the participant or bull gets injured, they have to be given treatment on the spot. The organizer should check whether there is first aid support for men and bulls.
The organizer should schedule different timings for each bull. It is not recommended or allowed to permit group of bulls inside the ring. There should be sufficient distance between spectator gallery and the ring to ensure safety. The barricade should be constructed between the ring and gallery. It should be strong enough since the bull has chances to break the barricade and run away. It can result in stampede.
Jallikattu is not a bullfight
When you evaluate Indian bullfight and Spanish bullfight, you can find that Jallikattu is not a bullfight. It does not have elements of injuring or slaying the bull in any format. Jallikattu is an exciting sport where the participants will attempt to hold the bull’s humps. They would not use any equipment like barbed sticks, lances, swords, etc. to play this sport. They should not use such equipment as it can cause injury to the bull.
The bullfight is developed on a concept of war and violence. But Jallikattu is designed as a healthy competition where the bulls and people play. There are chances of injury when the player is attempting to touch the horn of the bull. Jallikattu aids in nourishing native livestock breeds. The Jallikattu bulls will be treated with great care and honor in the community.
Moreover, the bulls will be cared and pampered as temple bulls in the region. The entire village will feed and take care of the bull. It will be treated as a pet animal in the village. They would show sufficient affection, care and love towards the animals. The affectionate and emotional relationship between the village folks, bull breeders and bull is the raising spirit behind Jallikattu.