No cockfights in AP, Telangana during this Pongal
The high court entrusted the responsibility of implementation of the ban on the two state governments
The Hyderabad High Court has banned conduct of cockfights in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana during Pongal (the harvest festival).
The high court entrusted the responsibility of implementation of the ban on the two state governments. The HC also said the ban is not confined to Pongal, but is applicable throughout the year.
The HC disposed of the case, passing orders to the effect in petitions filed by Animal Welfare Board of India, Humane Society International (India), People for Animals and several other animal rights bodies.
East and West Godavari districts, in particular, and several other coastal parts of the state in general are famous for cockfights in Andhra.
Several hundreds of crores of rupees change hands in the form of bettings, especially during Pongal. Elected representatives, including ministers, MPs and MLAs, openly participate in the events.
However, organisers, who have a lot of political influence, have made it clear that they would continue their cockfight sport with a traditional spirit.
“We can’t care court stays or court directives in cockfight issue. The governments as well as courts allow playing games, horse races and other gambling games. But, cockfight is not a gambling game, it is only a traditional sport which reflects the courage and image of the area and its culture,” an organiser reportedly said.