Former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa’s niece Deepa Jayakumar has said she will contest from RK Nagar, the seat that was held by the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam chief when she died. Jayakumar told Times Now that nobody from the family of the party’s current general secretary VK Sasikala should be allowed to rule the state – something she has brought up before and that her brother seemed to echo on Thursday.
There has been a massive shift in Tamil Nadu politics after Jayalalithaa died in December 2016. Though VK Sasikala had shot to the top of the AIADMK, her rise has been questioned by several people, including O Panneerselvam who had become chief minister after Jayalalithaa’s death. He was expelled from the party after revolting against Sasikala.
In January, Deepa Jayakumar had said she would launch her own political party on her aunt’s birth anniversary, which is today, February 24. She had earlier said, “I am here because of my aunt Jayalalithaa. I want to complete the tasks she left behind,” Jayakumar said. “Only a democratically elected person should become the chief minister of Tamil Nadu. Being with someone for 33 years is not a qualification for the post. People are scared of her [Sasikala], I am not.”
Meanwhile, Apollo Hospital, where Jayalalithaa had died, told the Madras High Court on Thursday that all information that the former chief minister had wanted released about her illness had already been put out. The hospital said information had been released in “accordance with her wishes”, The New Indian Express reported. The court was hearing a plea seeking an inquiry into the late AIADMK chief’s death. The hospital added that Jayalalithaa did not want pictures of herself released during her illness either. She had been at the hospital from September 23, 2016 till she died in December.