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Bull Sports and Events In India

Bull Surfing

Bull Surfing

Bulls and cows are the considered a religious animal and respected pet in many countries like India, Nepal, Bhutan, Ancient Rome and Ancient Israel. In India, cows and bulls are sacred and the butchery of cattle is prohibited and their meat is offensive. They are depicted in Indian Hindus Vedic religion and endorsed for plenty of Ayurveda welfare. The Indian Judicial Court had banned the butchery of Cows and bulls since Feb 2015.

But they have an ancient history as a pet and many bull sports and events are accepted as a traditional event. In some part of India bull sports and events like bullfighting, bull surfing and bull racing are traditional and religious events. Though many people and social activists are against it who believe such sports are cruelty and raised their voice against along with PETA India, which resulted a ban instruction from the honourable Supreme Court of India, effective from year May 2014. But again, in 14 January, 2016, Supreme Court of India upheld its ban for some of these events with some safety terms and conditions.

Bull Sports and Events in India

In some part of India bull sports and events are considered traditional and cultural events. Some events like Bull surfing, Bull nesting and bull fighting is still an attraction for tourists and photographers. You can categorize these events in five subcategories,
- Bull Racing
- Bullock Cart Racing
- Bull Surfing
- Bull Nestling
- Bull fighting (Tempting)


Bull Nestling is a dangerous and traditional sport to take over a tempted bull.


Bull Racing is an ancient sport in India, which is still popular in some part of India like Punjab, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala. Basically, this is a game of bull racing in farming land, driven by two bulls and controlled by Single man.


Bullock kart racing is very popular in Punjab and Chhattisgarh, India. This is a race a competition by a bullock cart, driven by two bulls and controlled by a single man.


This is another similar sport like Bull racing, held in south Indian states Karnataka, Tamilnadu and Kerla. It’s an event of Bull Surfing in a Water field, controlled by a single man and driven by two bulls and is guided by two freestanding men from out of surfing field.


Bull and buffalo fighting is a contentious event, now days such events are banned in India. Though there are some witnesses that verifies, such event is being organised by local villagers in some remote and interiors locations.


Bull Racing is an ancient sport in India, which is still popular in some part of India like Punjab, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala. Basically Bull racing has 3 different sets.

Jallikattu is an ancient festival of South Indian State Tamilnadu. This event was started from the village called Jallikattu or "Manji Virattu'', and hence this event is known as Jallikattu Festival. Basically, this is a sport of Bull nestling game that was a popular sport among Tamil classical warriors. Still, it's very popular in many parts of Tamilnadu, where villagers plays this game as a part of Pongal celebration, every year to date 14th January.

Jallikattu is the most dangerous event, the participant have to take over a tempted bull without using any exceptional security or safety mean and many casualties were reported during this event, according to a roughly collected data over 200 deaths were reported over the past two decades. In 2014 some animal activists and PETA India protested against this event and this event was banned since May 2014, by the order of the Supreme Court of India. But again since 14 January, 2016, ban was upheld and it’s allowed legally.

Bullock cart racing is an event started from the Punjab region of India.This event is also known as “Kila Raipur sports festival” and deliberated as rural Olympic in Punjab state. But a member of ‘Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI)’, protested against this game and he approaches to DC and Director of the Animal Husbandry department to ensure there are no violations during the festival. Since then this game is banned by the order from the Supreme Court of India, effective from year may 2014.

Maramadi Bull Surfing sport is a bull racing sport. This event was started from the village of Anandapally, Kerala, India. It helds on 15th August of every year on the occasion of the annual Maramadi festival during the post-harvest season in village of Anandapally, Kerala, India. The race takes place in the muddy harvesting land soaked in 3-6 inches deep water. The rule of this game is, a pair of participating oxen managed by three people that include one handler and two guides. While their handlers stayed on a wooden timber type of board by holding the tail and standing onto a harness, and guides can give instruction by standing outside to the mud.

Buffalo surfing is another form of the Maramadi bull surfing festival. It is held on 15th August of every year on the occasion of the annual Maramadi festival. Only difference is, instead using a pair of bull a pair of buffaloes are used.

5. Bull Buffalo surfing


Maramadi bull surfing event has grown its popularity in recent years and now days apart from local villagers and natives, it’s an attraction for photographers and tourists also. The success and popularity of maramadi event encouraged to new experiments. And surfing with a combination of bull and buffalo is an additional experiment.

Though Bull buffalo surfing was a popular event of some villages from the border area of India and Bangladesh. Now days this event is expanded to nearby Indian villages of West Bengal and Assam state of India. Usually this event takes place every year in between 10-20 August.

Kambala is an ancient festival, started and held from Southern Karnataka, India. The traditional buffalo race was a popular sport among local villagers and now it’s getting popularity among state and being organised in south Indian city Mangalore. Usually this event is celebrated every year, at the time of beginning of harvest season, in the between Month of November to March. Though the history of the origin of this game is not clear, but commonly it’s believed that this event was started thousand years back as a sport for entertainment and pleasure for the Hoysala Kings for royal family’s.

The Goan Bull fight is a sport of bull fighting in open farm area, this was started from Goa state and hence known as Goan Bull Fighting. But this game, it’s banned by local government since 1988 onward. But there are some witness that verifies, it’s still sustained in rural areas and villages like Caranzalem, Santa Cruz, Taleigao. The contestant bulls of the sport are being trained by local farmers to fight and event is being organised by some local rich people. The date and time of this event are not disclosed, that is being announced just before an hour to start.

8. Buffalo Fight in Goa


The Goan buffalo fight is another form of the Goan bull fight, this is a fight between two buffaloes. Instead, using the trained bulls to fight, it happens between two buffalos. The strongest buffalo from each village is being selected and each buffalo represent their village. This event takes place in rural areas and in some villages in Goa.

Bull Fight in Goa India

This was a popular game in Assam district usually held during the month of Jan or Feb. But from last 2-3 years, The Gauhati High Court (The state court of Assam) banned this event. Latter in year 2014, some local people approach with appeals to allow them to celebrate this festival a token fight between buffaloes also they ensured no any buffalo will be hurt. The request was accepted by Court and they got permission to token fight under a supervision, local police and security staff.

Buffalo fight of Nasik Sunya was an ancient popular festival of Nasik city of Maharashtra, India. But this event is banned since 2014 onward on instruction of state judicial court. Though some evidences verifies that still this game is being organised in some villages around Nasik city.

© 2016 Aaradhya

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