District Cancels Ox-Cart Racing Amid Rising Covid Cases | Pune News

PUNE: The district administration has canceled the oxcart races due to the increase in Covid cases.
District collector Rajesh Deshmukh made the decision on Friday evening and issued two separate orders for Nanoli village in Maval tehsil and Chinchwodi village in Ambegaon tehsil.
The races were due to take place in these villages for the first time after the Supreme Court ruling last month.
“Hundreds of farmers had registered for the event. It would have been difficult for the organizers to manage social distancing and meet social distancing standards. In addition, positive Covid cases have been on the rise since December 26. Considering these aspects, we had to cancel the races until further notice, ”Deshmukh told TOI on Saturday. The decision was not well received by organizers, villagers and horse cart racing enthusiasts.
Former MP Shivaji Adhalraon Patil, the main race organizer from Chinchwadi village, said the decision was made politically.
“Until 8 pm on Friday, the district administration officials made all the arrangements and allowed us to continue the race. However, around 11 p.m. we were told to cancel the event. Why did the administration make the decision abruptly? said former MP Adhalrao Patil.
Villagers claimed that the food stall vendors would suffer huge financial losses due to the race being canceled.
A Supreme Court bench recently authorized the resumption of bullock cart racing in Maharashtra, which was banned by the Bombay High Court in 2017 because it observed that the traditional sport was played in other states in the country.
The bench’s remarks came after lead attorney Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the state, pointed out that the sport was allowed in states like Karnataka and Tamil Nadu under similar laws passed by the respective state governments .
The law was blocked by the Bombay High Court in October 2017 on the basis of a 2014 Supreme Court ruling that banned the use of bulls for any sport or race.