After the death of AIADMK president Jayalalitha, there have been many rifts over the party chief and everyone is discussing who will be the next part chief? However, less than two weeks after J Jayalalitha death, her party has decided to hand over the party leader post to her closest aide Sasikala Natarajan.
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) today officially declared that 54-year-old Sasikala would be the party chairman and general secretary. Party’s representative C Ponnaiyan said, “Sasikala holds no post in the party. Rules will be rewritten if needed to place her in control. It is the desire of entire party members.”
Sasikala has functioned as the morality of Amma. Lakhs of supporters, party activists called Jayalalitha as Amma. Amma or Mother is how lakhs of supporters, whose piety bordered on sacred, referred to Jayalalitha when she died on December 5 after a massive heart stroke. Sasikala Natarajan who is the close friend and lived with her at her bungalow in Chennai’s Poes Garden is often called Chinamma (mother’s younger sister).
Ms Jayalalithaa’s party run with an unusual amount of adulation with ministers often prostrating before her at public events, a practice she didn’t discourage. After Jaya’s death, O Panneerselvam, a supporter who always carried Amma photo in his shirt pocket daily was made the new Tamil Nadu Chief Minister. He sat in the CM chair earlier twice when she was arrested on corruption charges. The arrangements that saw him taking pledge hours after MS Jayalalithaa died in hospital were credited to Ms Natarajan, who according to critics which include some party officials played a revolt on a major role for her shortly.
Even though holding no party position, Sasikala’s influence over Jayalalithaa was well known to all. She had played a vital role in the selection of candidates and arranging appointments. Four years ago, the women were separated after Jayalalithaa became influenced that Ms Natarajan was devious with her husband and other family members to fade her authority. As part of the settlement, Sasikala stated she would no longer be connected with her relatives.
However, when Jayalalithaa’s body was placed in a huge hall for visitors, the family members who Sasikala Natarajan had denied were visible in their presence. Meanwhile, political analysts zoomed on this incident; the AIADMK was cool.
Ms Sasikala Natarajan who met Jayalalitha in the 80s performed her last rites. Soon she will take charge as General Secretary, a position held by Jaya for nearly 30 years, said, party.