Chennai: As Sasikala turns 64 today, this will be the second birthday that the deposed AIADMK leader and close aide of former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa spends at the Parappana Agrahara Prison in Bengaluru.
Apart from her birthday, today is also an important day for the AIADMK.
It was on this day last year that a marathon meeting for merger was held between the representatives of the AIADMK Amma faction led by Edappadi K Palaniswami and AIADMK Puratchi Thalaivi Amma camp led by O Pannerselvam .
A closed door meeting for about six hours was held on the night of 18 August 2017 at Panneerselvam’s residence in Greenways Road.
Jayalalithaa samadhi in Marina was decorated and kept ready in anticipation of the arrival of both the leaders after the merger.
However, things did not go as planned. Though OPS was satisfied with the offer made to him, his supporters were not that convinced, it was said.
Though the talks failed on that day, on 19 August both Palaniswami and Panneerselvam expressed confidence over the merger following which the merger happened on 21 August. Following this Panneerselvam became the Deputy Chief Minister.
The following general body meeting passed a resolution nullifying the appointment as Sasikala as the general secretary of the party. It was said that a steering committee would be formed to guide the party.
In build up to the merger, on 17 August last year, Palaniswami announced that a commission would be constituted to inquire into the death of Jayalalithaa. This move came as an indicator that his faction AIADMK Amma was ready for the merger.
Palaniswami had also announced that Jayalalithaa’s residence ‘Veda Nilayam’ would be turned in to a memorial. Even before this, on 10 August Palaniswami announced TTV Dhinakaran’s appointment as deputy general secretary of the party was against party rules and he also cancelled all the appointments made by him.