Bangaluru, Dec 12, 2014: The Union government on Thursday told the High Court of Karnataka to allow Kambala — a traditional slush track buffalo race — to be conducted for now, but with some riders, at the two coastal districts of Dakshina Kannada and Udupi.
However, the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has opposed the sport, saying that forcing the buffaloes itself amounted to “cruelty”.
Assistant Solicitor General of India Krishna S. Dixit, appearing for the Union government, pointed out some conditions, such as: not to subject buffaloes to cruelty; not to mutilate their body parts or apply irritant solutions on their body to make them run; and to provide proper food and water.
Suggesting that all Kambala events could be videographed to monitor whether any provision of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act (PCA) was being violated, he said there is no scientific study or expert view on the impact of the race on the buffaloes, unlike the detailed investigative reports prepared on ‘Jallikattu’ (bullfight).
Mr. Dixit also pointed out that the apex court banned Jallikattu as extreme pain was inflicted on bulls before they were made to run. The manner in which the buffaloes are used in Kambala cannot be compared to Jallikattu.
The laws across the world, including the PCA Act, only prevents infliction of “unnecessary” pain or suffering on animals, but does not totally prevent infliction of pain on animals as the law itself permits killing, Mr. Dixit argued while stating that using a cane to “guide” cannot be termed as cruelty as farmers too use canes on buffaloes during ploughing.
However, AWBI counsel C.K. Nandakumar argued that the apex court’s verdict is clearly applicable for Kambala as making buffaloes run amounted to cruelty as buffaloes too belong to the same family of animals as bulls. Justice S. Abdul Nazeer has reserved his verdict.
COurtesy: The Hindu