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No stay on Jallikattu act, but SC raps TN government for protests against ban

Refusing to put a stay on the new Jallikattu act, the Supreme Court on Tuesday slammed the Tamil Nadu government for failing to maintain the law and order during the recent protests in the state.

Condemning the violent protests against the SC ban on the bull taming sport, the apex court told the state government that it is their duty to protect law and order. “Law & order is your duty..make sure people don’t defy our orders,” the court told the government.

The apex court also asked the state government to explain why the new law should not be struck down and sought reply to the same within six weeks.

The bench consisting of Justices Dipak Misra and RF Nariman permitted the Centre to withdraw the January 7, 2016 notification allowing Jallikattu in Tamil Nadu.

Speaking on the law and order situation in the state during the protest, the apex court slammed Tamil Nadu for not following the mandate. “Tell your government that law and order is primacy in civilised society and we can’t tolerate such incidents,” the court asked senior advocates K Parasaran and Rakesh Dwivedi, appearing for the state.

The Tamil Nadu Assembly on January 23 unanimously passed an amendment bill that allowed Jallikattu to be conducted across the state.

The Bill defines Jallikattu as an event involving bulls conducted with a view to following tradition and culture from January to May and it includes similar events like ‘Manjuviratu’, ‘Vadamadu’ and ‘Erudhuvidum’ festivals.

“In continuation of protests seeking nod for bull taming sport Jallikattu, law and order problems happened in Chennai, Madurai and Coimbatore on Jan 23 and other areas and a Commission of Inquiry will be set up to enquire into the reasons and circumstances for it,” Panneerselvam said.

Spelling out the terms of reference, he said the Commission will probe if the police had used appropriate force over the protesters, and if it was proportionate to the circumstances, and the damage to public and private properties.

“It will enquire if there had been excesses in police action and if it had been so, the Commission will advise on the action to be taken,” he said adding recommendations will also be made to avert such situations in the future.

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