What is the future of AIADMK? Hushed debates among partymen

As their leader lays ill, AIADMK leaders are debating the future of the party in hushed voices.
As Jaya lays ill, AIADMK debates its future in hushed voices.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]T[/dropcap]amil Nadu and the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) are experiencing a silent political cacophony following the prolonged illness of chief minister Jayaraman Jayalalithaa since September 22. The future of AIADMK as a political party itself is being debated all over the State, though in a hushed manner.

The media in Tamil Nadu is cautious about writing anything which is not to the liking of the alleged Mannargudi Mafia led by Jayalalithaa’s long term friend and confidante Sasikala Natarajan and her private army of goons and ruffians.

The affidavit submitted by the three AIADMK candidates contesting the November 19 assembly election is yet another proof that all is not well with the health of Jayalalithaa who has been hospitalized since September 22 for “fever and dehydration”. This could be the first time in her political career Jayalalithaa would have affixed her thumb impression instead of her unique signature on any document, be it official or unofficial. The truth is that Chief Minister Jayalalithaa is not in a position to hold even a pen by herself. The hospital authorities, government officials and the Mannargudi Mafia who has allegedly enslaved Jayalalithaa are not letting the outside world know about her real health condition.

The media in Tamil Nadu is cautious about writing anything which is not to the liking of the alleged Mannargudi Mafia led by Jayalalithaa’s long term friend and confidante Sasikala Natarajan and her private army of goons and ruffians. It is said that all criminal defamation cases filed against media persons and political leaders who criticized Jayalalithaa were at the instance of the Sasikala Natarajan and her cohorts to create a fear psychosis among the people. Jayalalithaa is described as an open person who does not care ‘a damn’ about what the media writes about her.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]T[/dropcap]hose who saw Jayalalithaa inspecting the Guard of Honour and addressing the people of Tamil Nadu on August 15 were shocked at the health condition of the chief minister. She was finding it difficult to walk even a single step and it was clear from her face that Jayalalithaa was suffering from severe pain. People who know her for long are of the view that Jayalalithaa is not one who let others know about her difficulties, physical or mental. The physicians attending to the chief minister owe a lot of explanation to the country for their indifference to the health status of one of India’s most important political personalities. Had the doctors attending to Chief Minister Jayalalithaa taken note of her ailment at that time, this situation could have been avoided, say Jayalalithaa observers.

Sasikala Natarajan and her close family members who made it to the billionaires’ club only because of their close links to Jayalalithaa are a law unto themselves in Tamil Nadu.

Old timers in Chennai point out that when the then Chief Minister M G Ramachandran was admitted to a hospital in USA for treatment, the then government or party leadership had no problems in issuing latest medical bulletins as well as pictures of MGR in the hospital bed. But MGR’s wife and close family members were there to look after him and they had nothing much to cover up from the public eye.

It is alleged that Sasikala Natarajan and her close family members who made it to the billionaires’ club only because of their close links to Jayalalithaa are a law unto themselves in Tamil Nadu. All official appointments are being carried out according to the whims and fancies of Sasikala, her husband Natarajan (who is allegedly an agent of the LTTE and anti-national forces) and a cabal of bureaucrats and politicians who act as their henchmen. Senior BJP leader Dr. Subramanian Swamy had tweeted this about Natarajan yesterday:
Swamy comments on Natarajan
[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]I[/dropcap]t is being pointed out that D Anbazhagan, a Chennai based investigative journalist took more than five years to write K D Brothers, a book depicting the corrupt deals of Kalanidhi and Dayanidhi Maran, nephews of Muthuvel Karunanidhi, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) chief. But Anbazhagan could write a much bigger book listing the corruption happening with the concurrence of the Mannargudi Mafia. His magnum opus is the revelation of how a junior Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer with links to Sasikala Natarajan amassed wealth to the tune of Rs 3,500 crores ($525 million) during the AIADMK regime of 2011 to 2016.

What stands out is the truth that Jayalalithaa had ousted Sasikala Natarajan and her cohorts from the Poes Garden residence in 2011 itself.

What stands out is the truth that Jayalalithaa had ousted Sasikala Natarajan and her cohorts from the Poes Garden residence in 2011 itself. Jayalalithaa had also issued a statement while throwing out Sasikala and her coterie from the AIADMK and asked the party cadre not to have any kind of relation with the Sasikala-led mafia. Though Sasikala somehow managed to enter the Poes Garden, Jayalalithaa had not readmitted her to the party. When the statement ousting Sasikala from Poes Garden and AIADMK was released to the general public, the entire party cadre had welcomed the decision by bursting crackers all over Tamil Nadu.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]W[/dropcap]hen Jayalalithaa admitted Sasikala back to the Poes Garden residence, AIADMK activists and other ministers explained it away by pointing to the Disproportionate Assets Case against the AIADMK supremo which was being heard by the Special Court in Bangalore. “It was because of the fact that Sasikala and her close relations who were the co accused in the case may damage Jayalalithaa’s reputation that they were allowed to brought back to the Poes Garden,” an AIADMK leader had said on that occasion.

It is reported that a team of doctors from All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi was deputed by the Centre following doubts being raised about the kind of treatment meted out to Jayalalithaa.

If the special branch police sources are to be believed, Natarajan is mobilising the AIADMK Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA)’s behind him so that he could be sworn in as chief minister in the event of Jayalalithaa being declared medically unfit to continue with her official responsibilities. Another news doing the rounds in Secretariat is how Sasikala asked Panneerselvam, (who was authorised by Governor Vidyasagar Rao to chair the cabinet meetings till Jayalalithaa returns to her normal duties) not to park his official car in the Secretariat porch where Jayalalithaa usually parks her official Prado. A shocked Panneerselvam has not taken his car to the porch since then. It is also an open secret that Sasikala is not on good terms with Panneerselvam and had insisted that Governor Rao authorize Edappadi Palaniswamy, a much junior minister to convene and chair cabinet meetings. Since journalists in Chennai are known for their subservient nature, they are afraid to write anything questioning the writ of Sasikala Natarajan and her mafia.

The Chennai journalists are bold enough to write defamatory articles only against the Hindutva forces and the Pattalai Makkal Katchi since they know well that these two entities do not react to any kind of news about them. The recent visit by Rajathi Ammal, third wife of DMK chief M Karunanidhi to Apollo Hospital reportedly to inquire about the health condition of Jayalalithaa is seen as a harbinger of future developments in the Dravidian politics. Rajathi Ammal, the most loved wife of Karunanidhi (Dayalu Ammal is reportedly sick while Rajathi Ammal is healthy and virile) is understood to have told Sasikala that the DMK leadership would stand by the Mannargudi Mafia in the post-Jayalalithaa scenario.

The Centre is keenly watching things in Tamil Nadu. It is reported that a team of doctors from All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi was deputed by the Centre following doubts being raised about the kind of treatment meted out to Jayalalithaa. The latest news is that the Poes Garden house is being converted into a mini-hospital with elevators and other hi-tech instruments and facilities to meet any medical emergencies even if Jayalalithaa is discharged from the hospital.

Tamil Nadu is in for a long bout of political uncertainties and group war which may result in the disintegration or breaking up of the AIADMK as there are no second-rung leaders in the party. Rumors are that a section may merge with the DMK while another section may align with the Congress. But there are many ifs and buts associated with these rumors which would be cleared only by time alone.

Note:
1. The conversion rate used in this article is 1 USD = 66.68 Rupees.
2. Text in Blue points to additional data on the topic.

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