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The Honourable High Court of Bombay has passed an order stating that it is bound by the observations and views of the 2014 Supreme Court judgment that banned bullock cart races across the country – but Maharashtra's bulls still need your help.
The Supreme Court banned bullock cart races – as well as bullfights, jallikattu, kambala, and similar spectacles – in May 2014 because they are inherently cruel and involve inflicting physical and psychological abuse on bulls. However, the Maharashtra government enacted the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Maharashtra Amendment) Act, 2017, and set out the Maharashtra Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Conduct of Bullock Cart Race) Rules, 2017, in an attempt to overrule the ban and permit bullock cart races again in the state. Now that the High Court of Bombay has mandated that bullock cart racing remain banned in Maharashtra, the state government may approach the Supreme Court. The animals used and abused in this cruel spectacle desperately need our continued help.
Bullocks don't run during races because they want to win a title or prize – they bolt because someone has hit them with a weapon, such as a nail-studded stick or a whip. Frenzied participants sometimes even break their tailbones at each joint, which is equivalent to breaking a human's finger joint by joint. These barbaric acts directly contravene the central government's PCA Act, which clearly states that it's an offence for animals to be beaten, kicked, over-ridden, tortured, or subjected to pain or unnecessary suffering and for owners to permit such treatment. Moreover, allowing bullock cart races not only goes against the Constitution of India's mandate for animal protection but also apparently violates the provisions of The Bombay Police Act, 1951, and is counter to the spirit of the Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Act, 1995.
PETA released a detailed investigation report – with video documentation – of bullock cart races in Maharashtra in 2013, which revealed systemic abuse of bullocks. PETA's eyewitnesses observed that animals were deprived of food, water, and shade and roughly yanked by nose ropes, causing their noses to bleed. Participants physically abused the animals to force them to run – even when exhausted – including by biting and twisting their tails, striking them, and rubbing irritants into their mouths.
IT WOULD BE A HUGE STEP BACKWARDS TO ALLOW BULLOCK CART RACES IN MAHARASHTRA AGAIN. YOU CAN HELP BULLS BY SENDING A MESSAGE TO THE CHIEF MINISTER OF MAHARASHTRA EXPRESSING YOUR CONCERNS AND REQUESTING THAT HE REPEAL THE PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS (MAHARASHTRA AMENDMENT) ACT, 2017.