Chennai, Feb 15 (PTI) Animal rights advocacy group, People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has written to a Tamil Nadu Minister, whose bull died during a jallikattu event, seeking his support to repeal an act passed to ensure conduct of the bull taming event in the state.

Tamil Nadu Health Minister C Vijayabaskar’s bull died after it was injured when the animal hit a wall at the jallikattu venue in Puthukottai on February 11.

The bull ‘Komban’ was injured when it smashed into the wall near vadivasal’ (entry point).

The bull was taken to a nearby hospital after being provided first aid, but had succumbed to head injuries.

In his February 14 letter to Vijayabaskar, PETA India Lead of Public Policy Nikunj Sharma said young men who may be sole or primary earners, “are killed” in jallikattu and that a ban on this “cruel activity would prevent countless injuries and deaths.”

Sharma referred to media reports quoting Vijayabaskar as saying he felt as if he had lost a close family member, “a child” in response to his bull’s death.

“Certainly, a good father would take steps to ensure that his other children, whether human or bull, don’t suffer the same fate. Because you are the Health Minister, we hope you will agree that Tamil citizens and bulls should not continue to be injured and killed in this cruel activity.” “For these reasons, we request that you support a repeal of The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Tamil Nadu Amendment) Act, 2017,” Sharma said in the letter.

Sharma said video footage taken during jallikattu events held in several districts of Tamil Nadu after the passage of the Act “reveals rampant cruelty to bulls.” Sharma said “participants hit and tackled bulls and twisted and bit their tails, humans stabbed and jabbed bulls with sickles and other sharp objects. Bulls were deprived of adequate shade, food, and water,” he said.

Unauthorised jallikattu events took place outside designated areas and without permission, he claimed, adding human participants and spectators “were often injured or killed.”

Bulls were commonly injured and sometimes killed, but their deaths often went unreported,” Sharma said in his letter to the Minister.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.