THE SASIKALA CONUNDRUM
India Today|November 15, 2021
On October 30, politicians of every hue in Tamil Nadu, led by Chief Minister M.K. Stalin, made a beeline for the samadhi of Pasumpon Muthuramalinga Thevar at Pasumpon in Ramanathapuram district on his 114th birth anniversary.
Amarnath K. Menon

But the event honouring the late freedom fighter and spiritual icon was eclipsed by the buzz over the possible return to the AIADMK of another member of his Mukkalothor Thevar cohort, V.K. Sasikala.

Released from jail in January this year, after a four-year-long incarceration in a Rs 66 crore disproportionate assets case, the late Jayalalithaa’s mercurial aide is suddenly making news again. Sasikala had gone to Thevar’s Pasumpon shrine a day ahead in a convoy bearing the AIADMK flag. During the week-long tour of Thanjavur, Madurai and Ramanathapuram districts in southern Tamil Nadu, Sasikala was greeted by supporters in many places. Some of them were also from the AIADMK, the party that had used her conviction as an excuse to expel her in 2017, even though she was then its all-powerful general secretary.

Prospects of her return to the party fold gained traction after ex-chief minister O. Pann ee r selvam (OPS), also a Mukkalothor, declared on October 25 that the apex body of the AIADMK will decide soon on the matter. This was right after OPS handed over the golden armour regalia that would adorn Muthuramalinga Thevar’s statue to the birthday celebrations committee. He was aware of Sasikala’s tour. The regalia, incidentally, was a gift from Jayalalithaa seven years ago to retain the goodwill of the Mukkalothor community.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM INDIA TODAYView All

The Omicron Explosion - How Dangerous Is It?

Don’t be fooled by Omicron’s milder manifestation. Covid’s new strain is spreading like wildfire and can be ignored only at our own peril

10+ mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022

CONFIDENCE BOOSTER

The launch of the booster shot campaign and new vaccines give hope that the impact of Omicron and the third wave will be less severe than the previous surge

8 mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022

GOA GETS A PARTY OF PARTIES

The TMC’s entry is the big news in the Goa election. Elsewhere, the mix ’n match of state politics continues even as the BJP tries to stave off anti-incumbency

5 mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022

AN UNEASY TRUCE

On December 15, 2021, a long-drawn-out legal battlebetween members of the erstwhile Jaipur royalty came to a close.

4 mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022

DELIGHTING IN THE DETAIL

Her attention to craft has helped actor SHEFALI SHAH become the cynosure of modern entertainment

4 mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022

WANTED: A HEALING TOUCH

After two Covid-battered years and in the midst of assembly elections, the government is likely to attempt a feelgood budget for 2022-23

5 mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022

Q + A “AGE HAS LIBERATED ME”

Actor Lara Dutta Bhupathi is enjoying her day in the ott sun. The comedy Kaun Banegi Shikharwati on Zee5 is already the former Ms Universe’s third web show in two years

1 min read
India Today
January 24, 2022

A CAMPAIGN WITH BYTE

Leaders savvy and unsavvy, freelance techie gunslingers who do saffron in the morning and socialism by night, the smell of virtual cordite…. India is seeing its first online-only elections. What do the Digital War Rooms of parties look like?

10+ mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022

THE POISONED WELL

Ask around in the Digambar Chowk area of Jorhat in Assam about engineering student Niraj Bishnoi and you run up against a strange kind of absence. Many in the neighbourhood did not even know he existed.

8 mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022

JAT PLUS: A CHALLENGE IN THE WEST

After a decade in the wilderness, the Rashtriya Lok Dal and its new chief, Jayant Chaudhary, are back in the reckoning in bastion western UP

4 mins read
India Today
January 24, 2022
RELATED STORIES

Governor, CM extend festival greetings

Chief Minister MK Stalin, in his message, said, “Pongal is a festival of Tamils, and this festival is interwoven in the cultural ethos of Tamils.

1 min read
The New Indian Express
January 14, 2022

State passes Bill to cut tenure of co-op directors from 5 to 3 years

Move may pave the way for DMK to wrest control of these bodies; AIADMK stages walkout

2 mins read
The New Indian Express Chennai
January 08, 2022

AIADMK walks out, slams govt; minister hits back

Opposition leaders stage a walkout at the Assembly

1 min read
The New Indian Express
January 06, 2022

No ‘New Year' wish on govt's Pongal bags

The DMK government has put an end to speculations over changing Tamil New Year to January 14 from April 14.

1 min read
The New Indian Express Chennai
January 04, 2022

Clarification sought on plea by former minister's kin

THE Madurai Bench of Madras High Court has referred the ‘not to harass' petition filed by AIADMK former minister KT Rajenthra Bhalaji's sister to the Chief Justice of Madras High Court for clarification on whether the plea should be heard at the Madras High Court or the Madurai Bench.

1 min read
The New Indian Express
December 21, 2021

Around 9K still awaiting ‘Amma two-wheeler' subsidies in Chennai

Corpn faces fund crunch after scheme was withdrawn, may write to State govt for support

1 min read
The New Indian Express
December 20, 2021

DMK govt made 525 promises, but kept only a few, says Palaniswami

AIADMK joint coordinator Edappadi K Palaniswami on Friday urged the DMK government in State to reduce the prices of petrol and diesel by ₹10 and ₹5 respectively. He led a demonstration in front of the Salem Collectorate as part of the state-wide agitation organised by the AIADMK.

1 min read
The New Indian Express
December 18, 2021

It's official: OPS and EPS to continue as AIADMK's top leader

AS expected, O Panneerselvam and Edappadi K Palaniswami were on Monday declared elected unopposed as coordinator and joint coordinator of the AIADMK respectively, a formalisation of their continued leadership of the party.

2 mins read
The New Indian Express
December 07, 2021

EPS and OPS likely to retain posts in party, announcement expected today

AIADMK coordinator O Panneerselvam and joint coordinator Edappadi K Palaniswami are likely be declared re-elected to their party posts unopposed once the deadline for withdrawal of nomination ends at 4 pm on Monday.

1 min read
The New Indian Express
December 06, 2021

OPS, EPS file papers for AIADMK top posts

AIADMK top brass - O Panneerselvam and Edappadi K Palaniswami on Saturday filed their nominations for the party's coordinator and joint coordinator posts.

1 min read
The New Indian Express
December 05, 2021