National

AP, Telangana jump into arena to foil cockfights

G Naga Sridhar Hyderabad | Updated on January 12, 2018 Published on January 12, 2018

It’s cockfight time in Andhra Pradesh with crores of rupees at stake for enthusiasts.

According to informal estimates of revenue officials, there are nearly 800 syndicates/groups that raise roosters (of about 100 each) for these fights to cash in on the popularity of cockfights in the northern districts of Andhra Pradesh alone. Cockfights are also popular in many other places in the two Telugu-speaking States.

Bets run into hundreds of crores. The traditional rural sport generally attracts politicians, celebrities and commoners.

Locally called ‘Kodipandeyam,’ it is a bloody sport of two roosters pitted against each other with razor blades attached to their legs. It goes on till one collapses and dies in the fighting pit.

A fighter rooster costs between ₹50,000 and ₹1 lakh. Earlier this week, the Andhra Pradesh High Court directed the State government to enforce ban on cockfights on grounds of cruelty to animals and illegal gambling, among others.

“Despite the legal ban on cockfighting, there are efforts to organise it by certain groups. Revenue officials are coordinating with the police to prevent them,” a senior official of the AP revenue department told Business Line.

According to A Chandrasekhar, Circle Inspector of Police, Bhimavaram, which is a traditional centre for cockfights, joint action teams with revenue officials and policemen have been formed. “Apart from conducting awareness sessions, we are keeping an eye on suspected organisers,” he said on phone from Bhimavaram.

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Published on January 12, 2018
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