The ruling AIADMK said on Saturday its senior functionaries have urged Sasikala Natarajan, the aide of late Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa, to lead the party “on the path shown by Puratchi Thalaivi Amma”.
The announcement on Twitter has come amid speculations that Sasikala is eyeing the top post of the party’s general secretary.
Senior functionaries of AIADMK urge Thirumathi Sasikala to lead the party on the path shown by Puratchi Thalaivi Amma.— AIADMK (@AIADMKOfficial) December 10, 2016
Earlier in the day, senior leader C Ponnaiyan said there is nothing wrong with AIADMK leaders calling on Sasikala as she is a “key member” of the party.
Ponnaiyan, who is also the party spokesperson, told reporters that the ruling AIADMK would act in a “democratic manner” and call for a meeting to elect the general secretary.
Elections to the post, which Jayalalithaa occupied unchallenged for more than two decades, are traditionally held in December, with the notable exception of 2014 when the former AIADMK leader was imprisoned over the disproportionate assets case.
The past few days after Jayalalithaa’s funeral have seen a flurry of activity, including new chief minister O Pannerselvam and key ministers holding meetings with 60-year-old Sasikala at the Poes Garden bungalow, the official residence of the former chief minister where she stayed with her for more than three decades.
“Besides, what is wrong in meeting her? She is an important person in the party, and the CM and other top officials need to discuss the affairs of the party,” he added.
“Sasikala Amma lived with Puratchi Thalaivi Amma’s (revolutionary leader Jayalalithaa’s) last breath. Such questions are unnecessary.”
Sasikala currently holds no posts within the AIADMK.