No bullock cart races in Maharashtra this Diwali, Bombay HC extends ban, calls the sport cruel
Maharashtra, October 17: The Bombay High Court extended the ban on bullock cart racing in Maharashtra. It infers that there will be no bullock cart racing in Maharashtra on Diwali. Every year after the celebrations of Ganesh Chathurthi, bullock cart racing in great numbers are organised but the ban by Bombay High Court Bombay High Court’s ban will not grant the permission to do so in 2017.
The bullock cart racing was a popular tradition in some parts of Maharashtra and is known as Bailgada Sharyat or Shankarpat in various parts of the state. The Bombay High Court asked the Maharashtra government in August to frame rules with the changes in Maharashtra’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and would govern the sport.
The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Maharashtra Amendment) Act 2017 clearly says that the organizers of the sport must be approved by the respective district collectors. But now the government has amended the rules and is chief justice Manjulla Chellur said that The very act of making a bullock run would amounts to cruelty. Can an amendment to the law change this fact?
Manjulla Chellur said that If Supreme Court says that bullocks are performing animals then let them say so. The bulls were not designed to be used as performing animals, making them participate in a race will inherently amount to cruelty. Bombay High Court will also hear a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by a Pune resident Ajay Marathe seeking a direction to stop the traditional sport.