Chief minister J Jayalalithaa is set to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on Tuesday in what will be her first official visit since her triumph in Tamil Nadu’s assembly elections, held last month.
In addition to presenting a 32-page document outlining her official queries, the AIADMK leader is expected to discuss, among other things, the formation of a Cauvery Management Board and Cauvery Water Regulation Committee, as well the issue of Tamil Nadu fishermen being held by Sri Lankan naval authorities.
It is also expected the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) willingness to court the AIADMK, which is buoyed by its resounding victory and its majority status in the Tamil Nadu assembly, may figure in the talks scheduled to begin at 4:30 pm. But an alliance seems unlikely.
With 37 MPs in the Lok Sabha, the third-largest of any party, as well as 12 MPs in the Rajya Sabha, Jayalalithaa’s support in pushing several pending bills in both Houses will certainly be of interest to the PM.
However, the BJP government had heavily criticised the six-time CM in the months leading up to the elections. Union power minister Piyush Goyal said he was unable to meet with Jayalalithaa during his 22-month tenure, and BJP president Amit Shah accused her of corruption.
While the PM avoided naming her directly during his election speeches in Chennai, he spoke about how the centre was the only one to help those affected in last year’s floods.
Jayalalithaa is expected return to Chennai by 9:00 pm after a 50-minute meeting with the Prime Minister.