Saripalli Chanavenkateshwaram Rao, 50, was hit in the neck with a blade tied to the rooster’s claw on January 15. A police spokesman told CNN the father of three was taken to hospital, where he later died from a stroke.
“The offenses have been made very clear and explained to the district and state authorities, but they choose to turn a blind eye towards it. It is not just for entertainment that these animals are made to fight, but it is (also) due to the heavy betting and gambling that goes on in the garb of these events,” Maulekhi said.
Kumar said the local cockfight went ahead without any arrests.
A 2014 Supreme Court judgment clarified the illegality of animal fighting under India’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. In 2015, Maulekhi used that judgment to intervene in a state court petition to lift the ban on cockfighting — and the ban was upheld.
“I don’t think culture has anything to do with it — it is purely a money game and hysteria takes over, reason and logic just take a back seat such that neither the animal’s welfare nor the people’s welfare is enough to stop it,” Maulekhi said.