Days ahead of Pongal, Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday refused to comment on the Jallikattu issue in his capacity as a Union minister but hinted that the government was in receipt of several suggestions seeking an amendment to the law.
“We are getting suggestions (to amend the law). After all, we did it in the Shah Bano case,” said Naidu adding, “but, we will have to see. We will have to discuss. We will have to weigh what court thinks. Personally, I feel that Jallikattu is a traditional art. It is a traditional sport in Tamil Nadu. Nobody should have problem with this.”
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Naidu was speaking at the India Today Conclave in Chennai, clarifying “I don’t know whether I should be saying this as a minister.” He, however, repeatedly sought to clarify that the issue did not concern his ministry and was non-committal on whether the government would bring an ordinance before January 14.
The Supreme Court had, in November last year, refused to revisit its 2014 order imposing a ban on the traditional sport, following which there has been a growing demand by politicians in Tamil Nadu urging the Centre to issue an ordinance allowing the sport. Jallikattu is a bull-taming sport played in Tamil Nadu as a part of the Pongal harvest festival.