'Jayalalithaa's saree was pulled… DMK MLAs laughed at her': Nirmala Sitharaman | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

'J Jayalalithaa's saree was pulled in assembly… DMK MLAs laughed at her': Nirmala Sitharaman

Aug 10, 2023 01:57 PM IST

Nirmala Sitharaman invoked how late Tamil Nadu chief minister and AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa was humiliated in the state assembly in 1989.

Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday invoked how late Tamil Nadu chief minister and AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa was humiliated in the state assembly in 1989.

Late Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa
Late Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa

Speaking during the debate on the no-confidence motion in Lok Sabha against the Narendra Modi government, Nirmala Sitharaman said, “I agree that women suffering anywhere - Manipur, Delhi, Rajasthan - will have to be taken seriously. No politics played. But I want to remind this entire House of one incident which happened on 25th March 1989 in the Tamil Nadu assembly. Then she hadn't become chief minister Jayalalithaa's saree was pulled in Tamil Nadu in the assembly. She was the leader of opposition. The DMK members who were seated there, heckled her and laughed at her... Has the DMK forgotten Jayalalithaa? You pulled her saree, you demeaned her. That day Jayalalithaa took an oath that she will never come to the House unless she becomes the CM. Two years later, she returned as the CM of Tamil Nadu...”

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Sitharaman also hit back at MP Kanimozhi by reminding the DMK of how it watched as Jayalalithaa was humiliated in the assembly.

Why Jayalalithaa’s saree was pulled in the assembly?

On March 25, 1989, Jayalalithaa, the Leader of the Opposition and the first woman in the state to occupy that post, was assaulted in the Tamil Nadu assembly.

Violence erupted in the assembly between members of her party and MLAs of Karunanidhi’s DMK. Karunanidhi called her all sorts of names after she called him a criminal. Later, she was physically assaulted and the loose end of her saree was pulled out.

Incensed and humiliated, she left the assembly, vowing that she would come back as the chief minister. The incident acquired the reverence of myth in the public imagination. Two years down the line, she threw Karunanidhi off the chief minister seat and swept to power.

No-confidence motion against Modi government

The Opposition moved a no-confidence motion against the Modi government on July 26 which was accepted by Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla. This is the second time Narendra Modi is facing a no-confidence motion.

Congress MP Gaurav Gogoi on Tuesday initiated the debate on the motion which later turned into a heated argument between the Opposition and the Centre.

The Parliament has been witnessing a logjam over a number of issues, including the violence in Manipur, since the beginning of the Monsoon Session on July 20.

The opposition leaders have been demanding a full-fledged discussion on the issue including a statement by the prime minister in the Parliament. Both houses -- Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha -- have seen repeated adjournments amid massive ruckus by the opposition leaders.

Manipur had been on the boil for the last three months after ethnic clashes broke out between two tribal communities Meitis and Kukis, when the Manipur High Court asked the state government to consider adding one of the communities to the list of Scheduled Tribes.

(With inputs from agencies)

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