Horse racing in violation of COVID restrictions at Palakkad Thathamangalam market. Horse racing was held at the Chittoor Thathamangalam market with 54 horses and more than three thousand people gathered in the streets to witness the ceremony. The incident took place between 7 pm and 8 pm. Police stopped the event at 8 a.m. and filed a case against the organizers after it was discovered that COVID had violated the regulations.
Horse racing is a biennial festival held in the market as part of the festival at the Vettakaruppu Temple. Horse racing is an important part of the faith of the six communities. The organizers had informed the police that the ceremony, which was usually held with horses, would be held only symbolically and that the communities would bring horses and go around the temple.
The police had suggested that the event should be held as the state is enforcing restrictions similar to lockdowns today and tomorrow. However, the police said that the market work committee had organized a rally at 6 am and a horse race at the Thathamangalam market between 7 am and 8 am.
The police intervened and stopped the event after people gathered in violation of COVID norms to watch the function and a case was registered against the organizers. However, it is alleged that the police had given permission knowing that people would gather even if the horse race was held only for ceremonies and that it was the police who controlled the traffic on the road where the horse race was held.
The festival, which runs from April 17 to May 2, features elephant rides in addition to horse racing. People from all over Ooty, Mysore, Andhra Pradesh and Madurai come to the festival. However, the police and local authorities suggested that the ceremonies be conducted in accordance with COVID standards.