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Will 'Chinnamma' Be the New Amma? All Eyes on AIADMK MLAs' Meet Today

A meeting of the AIADMK MLAs on Sunday could pave the way for the elevation of VK Sasikala, party general secretary and aide of the late J Jayalalithaa, as Tamil Nadu Chief Minister.

Poornima Murali | CNN-News18

Updated:February 5, 2017, 12:08 PM IST
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Will 'Chinnamma' Be the New Amma? All Eyes on AIADMK MLAs' Meet Today
File photo of AIADMK General Secretary VK Sasikala.

Chennai: A meeting of the AIADMK MLAs on Sunday could pave the way for the elevation of VK Sasikala, party general secretary and aide of the late J Jayalalithaa, as Tamil Nadu Chief Minister.

Top leaders of the AIADMK had told CNN-News18 on Saturday that Sasikala could take over as the Chief Minister next week.

AIADMK spokesperson CR Saraswathi had confirmed the developments saying a decision with regard to the elevation of Sasikala would be taken on Sunday.

"Chinnamma (Sasikala) could take over as the Chief Minister next week. You see, Panneerselvam has been continuing as CM only on Chinnamma’s advice,” a minister holding a key portfolio in the state government had told CNN-News18 on condition of anonymity.

Commenting on the developments, DMK working president ML Stalin on Sunday said: “The people of Tamil Nadu did not vote for anyone from Jayalalithaa’s household to become the Chief Minister… The DMK is watching the situation closely.”

“Any decision the DMK takes on the situation will be within the framework of democracy,” Stalin told PTI.

ALSO READ: People Did Not Vote For Anyone From Jaya's Household to be CM: Stalin

Speculation was rife that Sasikala’s elevation was only a question of when and not if, but the sudden public protests over the ban on bull-taming sport Jallikattu seem to have forced the speed of events.

ALSO READ: Sasikala Natarajan's Ascent from a Housewife to AIADMK Chief

Panneerselvam was seen as having an upper hand in the swift manner in which he persuaded New Delhi to allow the state to bring in an ordinance that effectively lifted the ban on the sport seen by its supporters as an essential part of Tamil culture.

Sasikala maintained her silence throughout the week when hundreds of thousands had stormed into Chennai’s Marina Beach demanding a lifting of the ban. However, political observers note that she was quick to claim credit for Panneerselvam’s trip to Delhi and the Centre’s green light for the Ordinance. “I made the AIADMK government fight for this cause (Jallikattu). I sent AIADMK MPs to meet the Prime Minister and Home Minister in person to request them (Centre) to permit the conduct of Jallikattu in the state. I asked the Chief Minister to meet the Prime Minister to talk about the issue,” she said in a statement issued soon after the CM landed back.

ALSO READ: It's Stalin vs Sasikala. Or Thalapathy vs Chinnamma, as Fans Would have it

Earlier, there were indications that Sasikala would wait until the final court verdict on the disproportionate assets case in which she along with the late CM had been implicated.

| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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