Sasikala’s Memorial Visit Hints at Political Comeback, AIADMK Says ‘Her Acting Might Fetch an Oscar, But No Place in Party’

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V.K Sasikala’s visit to the former TN Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa’s memorial at Marina in Chennai on Saturday has given rise to varying degrees of conjectures among the political circles.

With the AIADMK flag on her vehicle, Sasikala was seen entering the memorial amid chants of “AIADMK general secretary Thyaga Thai Chinnamma” by her supporters. With tears in her eyes, the close aide of Jayalalithaa was spotted paying a floral tribute to the once political maestro.

Talking to reporters following the tribute, Sasikala exuberated confidence in her ability to revive AIADMK. “I have spent three-fourths of my life with Jayalalithaa. It’s been over four years since I visited the memorial. At the Jaya memorial, I have heaved the burden off my chest. I am sure Jayalalithaa and MGR will protect the scores of AIADMK cadre,” she was quoted saying.

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 Her visit to the memorial site was however not taken well by the party members who expressed displeasure at her presence and also refuted claims of her making a comeback into politics.

“Sasikala has no place in the AIADMK.Her arrival at Amma Memorial has no political impact, she is just one among many benefactors of Jayalalithaa. If she wants a place in politics, AMMK is the right place. For her acting, she may get an Oscar award but no place in AIADMK,” party spokesperson and former minister D Jayakumar was quoted saying.

Ahead of this year’s assembly election, Sasikala has announced that she cannot ‘tolerate’ the decline of the party. “Coming soon, to set the party on right track. I cannot anymore tolerate the decline of the party. Taking everyone along is the party style, let’s unite,” she said in a statement. Ahead of the April 6 election, she had said she would stay away from politics. Now Sasikala has said she cannot see the party getting ruined due to ‘infighting’.

Sasikala, arrested in 2017 following her conviction in a case of disproportionate assets, was released in January this year. Although there had been efforts at merging her camp with the AIADMK, these had fallen through amid pressure from New Delhi. Months after her announcement that she was ‘stepping aside from active politics, the late J Jayalalithaa’s close aide V K Sasikala started sending signals about an imminent return to politics since May of this year. Her decision to “step aside” from politics had come a month before the Assembly polls in April.

Talks of her return were though supported by Panneerselvam while Palaniswami had opposed it, fearing that Sasikala would capture the party if she and her nephew T T V Dhinakaran were given the space, sources told The Indian Express.

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