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Cock Fight should not lead to injury to any bird during Pongal: Madras High Court

The Madras High Court has directed that during the course of conducting ‘Cock Fight,’ there should not be any injury to be caused to the birds.

The Division Bench of Justice V.M. Velumani and Justice R. Hemalatha disposed of a petition filed by one M. Munusamy alias Chinnapaiyan, seeking  direction to the respondents to grant permission and police protection for conducting the Cock Fight event during Pongal festival days on Januaty 17, 18 and 19, 2023 at Valakkanampoodi Pudur Village, Tiruvallur District.

According to the petitioner, he, along with a group of persons constituted a committee in their village, to conduct birthday celebrations of late Chief Minister Puratchi Thalaivar Dr. M.G. Ramachandran, for every year.

In order to mark the said function, they organise ‘cock fight’, which is the traditional game during the Pongal festival.

The said ‘cock fight’ is one of the ancient festival game being organised or conducted in temple festivals and other festivals in the countryside.

The petitioner has also stated that animals or birds will not be harmed and it is simply a traditional event for farmers.

Each and every year, they conduct ‘cock fight’ peacefully. The petitioner and his group has organised the ‘cock fight’ this year also during January 17 to 19, 2023 and for the said purpose in order to get permission and police protection, the petitioner has sent representations dated December 28, 2022 and January 2, 2023 to the respondents.

Since the respondents have not passed any order, the petitioner has come out with the present petition.

E.Vijay Anand, Additional Government Pleader, who  appeared for the respondents submitted that at the time of event, there should not be any betting, the cocks should not be intoxicated and no knives should be tied around the legs of the cocks. He further submitted that respondents would consider the representations of the petitioner and pass appropriate orders.

Considering the above submissions made by the counsel appearing for the petitioner as well as the Additional Government Pleader appearing for the respondents, the respondents are directed to consider the representations of the petitioner dated 28.12.2022 and 02.01.2023 taking into consideration the Circular Memorandum dated 09.04.2019 issued by the Director General of Police, Tamil Nadu enumerating the directions for sports events and grant permission and give police protection for conducting cock fight event during 17.01.2023 to 19.01.2013 at Valakkanampoodi Pudur Village, opposite to Thoppalamman Kovil, R.K.Pettai, Tiruvallur District, subject to the   following conditions:

(i) It is made clear that such an event shall be supervised by the respondents as well as the veterinary doctor of the nearby Government Veterinary Hospital. 
(ii) It is further made clear that during the course of conducting “Cock Fight”, there should not be any injury to be caused to the birds and the birds should not be intoxicated with any alcoholic substance and no knives should be tied around the legs of the birds, with the tip of the knives dipped in poisonous substances. The veterinary doctor shall ensure the same before the actual starting of the event. 
(iii)The petitioner shall bear the expenses towards police protection as well as the expenses towards the Veterinary doctor. 
(iv) It is made clear that the organizer should take precautionary measures to avoid any untoward incident while conducting the event of cock-fight. 
(v) Songs praising communal leader or having communal overtones should not be played. 
(vi) The petitioner will ensure that no flex board or  hoardings depicting particular community or leader is displayed. 
(vii)The petitioner volunteers to donate a sum of Rs.30,000/- (Rupees Thirty Thousand only) to Prasanthi Old Age Welfare Home, Chennai and payment of proof shall be produced before the respondents. 
(viii)No one is allowed to enter, except the owner of the birds which are going to participate in the event. 
(ix) Separate place to be allocated for the spectators. 
(x) According to the conditions, eligible birds are only allowed to participate in the event. If there is any certain objections being raised, it is to be taken to the concerned Police Station to take a decision. 
(xi) It is also made clear that neither the petitioner nor any of the parties/participants shall indulge in any gambling activities. 
(xii)All the above terms and conditions should be followed scrupulously by the petitioner and the petitioner shall file an affidavit of undertaking to the said effect before the respondents.  

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