Karnataka Assembly on Monday passed a bill to facilitate the conduct of “Kambala”, a traditional annual buffalo race held in the coastal districts of the state.
The demand for lifting the ban on Kambala garnered massive support after the success of Jallikattu protest in Tamil Nadu.
However, a clause in the new bill only permits events in which ‘unnecessary’ pain and suffering is not caused to animals.
Considering the significant role played by the traditional sports events ‘Kambala’ and bulls race or bullock cart race in “preserving and promoting traditions and culture among the people in the state” and their “vital role” in ensuring survival and continuance of native breeds of cattle, the government has decided to exempt their conduct, the bill said.
Similar to Jallikattu, Kambala was banned in November 2016, after PETA cited animal cruelty in the traditional sport.
Kambala used to be held in coastal regions of Karnataka. It was especially popular in Udupi and Dakshina Kannada districts. The sport generally starts in November and lasts until March.