Expelled AIADMK Rajya Sabha MP Sasikala Puspha, who has opposed party chief V K Sasikala’s elevation as Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, on Tuesday demanded that she be prevented from occupying the post and sought immediate intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to “give hope” to people of the state.
“The Prime Minister should take immediate action and give hope to the people. Tamil Nadu people are very sensitive. You might have seen that in the Jallikattu issue,” Sasikala told reporters here.
Pushpa, who had filed a suit in the Madras High Court seeking an order to restrain AIADMK from electing Sasikala as party general secretary, said the youth and women in the state were “boiling inside” due to the recent developments.
She said she had written to Modi and Tamil Nadu Governor C Vidyasagar Rao to not allow Sasikala to become the Chief Minister as she had a “criminal background” and people did not like her.
“How can people accept V K Sasikala as CM? An educated (person) should rule the state,” she said, adding the state’s image will take a beating if she became the Chief Minister.
The Rajya Sabha member alleged that V K Sasikala was a “criminal” as she has been convicted in a disproportionate assets case by the trial court. “In the higher court, most of the trial (sic) is over and a judgement will be out in one week. Let’s wait.”
Amid indications that Sasikala may not be immediately sworn-in as Chief Minister by Governor Rao, who is said to be taking legal opinion on the issue, Pushpa said, “I would like to thank Governor, who has taken good decision on this issue. He has not given up. He is standing by truth, I hope.”
Asked if O Panneerselvam was forced to resign as CM, she said, “It might have been done. For past two months, (those) who are opposing (Sasikala’s elevation) are being attacked brutally. Their autocratic and arrogant behaviour...everybody is watching in the state.”
If Jayalalithaa had wanted her long-time friend V K Sasikala to succeed her, she would not have made O Panneerselvam interim Chief Minister.
“When Madam (Jayalalithaa) was in hospital, had she preferred, she should have made Sasikala the CM. Why O Pannerselvam was made interim CM? She could have selected her at that time itself? She has not been allowed to become an MLA in the past 20 years,” she said.
“If she really liked this lady, Madam would have given a small party or government post to her,” she said, claiming Jayalalithaa had in 2011 openely alleged that Sasikala and her family had planned to kill her.
Maintaining that people had doubts about the circumstances of Jayalalithaa death, Pushpa said, “We don’t know what happened for 75 days in Apollo Hospital? Public is complaining to the Prime Minister that there should be a judicial probe. Why it has not been done we don’t know.”
A representation has been made to the Union Home Minister regarding this matter, she said, adding “I hope they will continue the process. But people feel that it is an assassination. It is a murder. They are doubting the death.”
Pushpa also said she had recently filed a complaint with the Election Commission contending that the election of Sasikala as AIADMK general secretary was not conducted as per procedure.
“I gave my representation to EC that it should not accept her as interim general secretary. It has not been done democratically,” she said, demanding that the EC cancel Sasikala’s election to the post.