AIADMK fight: How all the crisis began with Subramanian Swamy’s idea

The BJP leader had said if Sasikala was to be convicted in the wealth case, she would have more to gain if she was in the chief minister�s post.

AIADMK fight: How all the crisis began with Subramanian Swamy’s idea

The political crisis which is unfurling in the All-India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam after the death of its leader J. Jayalalithaa has been set off by advice that has gone wrong from a very seasoned political mind in the state – BJP vice-president Subramanian Swamy.

It is because of the advice boomeranging that the AIADMK is headed for a split with no room left for either O. Panneerselvam or for VK Sasikala. Swamy had met M. Natarajan, Sasikala’s husband, in Delhi recently for advice on how to proceed if she is convicted in the disproportionate assets case against her. Though Jayalalithaa is the primary accused in the case and is now deceased, some experts said Sasikala may not be convicted but others say she can be punished because she had amassed wealth also. The Supreme Court will deliver the verdict next week.

It is in this light that Swamy is said to have told Natarajan to get Sasikala sworn in as CM. He suggested this because, sources say, if she is convicted after her ascension to the CM chair, she can play the sympathy card like Jayalalithaa did in 2014 and use it to great political gain. If she is not convicted, she can continue to hold the general secretary chair. The Sasikala-Natarajan duo didn’t take Pannerselvam into confidence, assuming he would tag along with their decision.

Panneerselvam, a fierce Jaya loyalist, knew that allowing Sasikala to take over as CM will be committing hara-kiri. Therefore, the sudden séance at the Jayalalithaa memorial along the Marina, two days after submitting his resignation as chief minister.

Natarajan had been to meet Swamy since other BJP leaders have been keeping a great distance from Tamil Nadu after the jallikattu protests. Swamy had also made rude remarks about the Marina protesters following which he was trolled into silence.

After mucking up on Governor Vidyasagar Rao’s arrival, the BJP is keeping even more distance from the Sasikala camp. With BJP not in easy reach, the others Natarajan had met in Delhi have come to their aid – Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Ghulam Nabi Azad.

The BJP is now clueless on supporting Pannerselvam, who has been guaranteed support by the MK Stalin-led DMK.

As the suspense in the Tamil thriller winds down, Sasikala claims the support of some 120 MLAs (and diminishing) down from the full total of 135 who had signed blank sheets, including Panneerselvam. The reason behind the switching of sides is that Panneerselvam has assured that every AIADMK MLA who supports him will get a ministerial berth.

The offer of a ministerial berth by her rival is also making it difficult for Sasikala to keep her flock at Golden Bay Hotel calm and not greedy.