On Tuesday, hundreds of people in Chennai came together near Vivekananda House at Marina beach protesting the ban on Jallikattu, the bull-taming event part of traditional Pongal celebrations. The protest reportedly did not have any clear organisers or leaders, and yet individuals teamed together and refused to leave the Chennai beach until Jallikattu was allowed in the state. The Supreme Court has said that it can't deliver a final verdict on the Jallikattu ban before Saturday, which marks the day Tamil Nadu will celebrate as Pongal.
Protesters stayed through the night at Marina beach, reportedly sleeping in the adjacent lawns. Many of them had not left the protest site on Wednesday morning at the time of this report.
"Here no internet connection, rarely mobile network comes. We need more water and food. We planned to stay here overnight till we get result," posted several protesters on Facebook.
Some of the protesters were taken for negotiation to Tamil Nadu Fisheries Minister D Jayakumar's residence in Santhome where they were joined by Sports and Youth Welfare Minister Ma Foi K Pandiarajan, reported The New Indian Express. However, the ministers reportedly told the protesters that issuing an ordinance on the matter was beyond the scope of the state government.
According to reports, several celebrities including film stars and musicians were also present at the protest site to extend their support.
Some news organisations reported that there as many as 5,000 such protestors were present at the Marina beach. According to The News Minute, "The number of protesters was so high that the crowd spilled over to the beach road."
The protest, which began on Tuesday morning, continued to grow through the day as the crowd at Marina beach swelled. Protestors stayed through the night demanding Jallikattu be allowed for the Pongal celebrations. They also asked for scrapping of FIRs against protestors in Alanganallur and called for a ban on animal-rights group PETA.
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