New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to vacate a stay, granted on 12 January, on a government notification which allowed Jallikattu, a bull-taming sport in Tamil Nadu, and bullock cart races in other states, including Maharashtra, Karnataka, Punjab, Haryana, Kerala and Gujarat.

On Tuesday, a bench comprising justices Dipak Misra and N.V. Ramana stayed the government notification after hearing a plea by the Animal Welfare Board of India and animal rights organizations People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals India, Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations and others.

An intervention was filed on Wednesday by a private individual from Tamil Nadu who claimed to be aggrieved by the stay order. The court heard the matter on a priority basis.

The intervenor argued that Jallikattu must be allowed as preparations for the same are underway and people are awaiting the sport’s return.

Justices Misra and Ramana had earlier asked the central government and the states concerned to respond. The stay is temporary while hearings are on.

The government’s notification on 8 January said that “bulls can continue to be exhibited or trained as performing animals at events such as Jallikattu in Tamil Nadu and bullock cart races in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Punjab, Haryana, Kerala and Gujarat in the manner (specified) by the customs of any community or practised traditionally under the customs or as a part of culture, in any part of the country".

“We are unimpressed with the arguments as a decision was given previously after considering all facets of Jallikattu," the bench said in its order.

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