Two men have gored to death and up to 90 other people were injured in a bull-taming event in India’s southern state of Tamil Nadu amid ongoing debate and protests about the future of the sport.
The sport, known as jallikattu, was banned by India’s Supreme Court in 2014 which agreed with a petition by animal rights activists that it was cruel to the animals.
However, the government on Saturday passed an executive order to temporarily lift the ban following widespread protests and Jallikattu events were subsequently held in towns and villages across Tamil Nadu.
Police on Monday morning tried to evict proponents of the sport who were protesting on Marina Beach in the state capital Chennai saying they would not disperse until the ban was permanently lifted.
Clashes were reported at the site and protesters set a police vehicle on fire, broadcaster NDTV reported.
In the Pudukottai district, two men who were injured when they held on to a bull died on the way to hospital on Sunday evening, said local police official P Anand.
Animal rights activists have long opposed the activity, pointing to the injuries it causes to bulls as well as human deaths. Supporters say the sport is part of local tradition and heritage and deny it is cruel to animals.