Sasikala prepares to be the new CM amidst opposition

Social media went abuzz with "RIPTN" after her appointment as CM.

Sasikala prepares to be the new CM amidst opposition

While the politics in Tamil Nadu is rife with the latest appointment of Tamil Nadu's new Chief Minister Sasikala Natarajan, the Supreme Court has been petitioned to forbid her taking office till it decides on whether the 61-year-old is guilty of conspiring with J Jayalalithaa to accumulate vast amounts of wealth far exceeding their known sources of income in the early 90s.

In 2014, Tamil Nadu's ex-chief minister J Jayalalithaa and her closest aide, Sasikala were arrested and imprisoned in a jail in Bengaluru. Jayalalithaa was accused of misusing an earlier term to illicitly accrue expensive real estate, cash, gold, valuable jewelry and other assets. Sasikala was accused of aiding the corruption.

But the charges did not stick, and after their acquittal, Jayalalithaa returned to office, with O Panneerselvam's stint as place-holder ending. The Karnataka government then challenged the acquittal in the Supreme Court, where judges today were nudged about the delay in the case. In response, they said a decision will be shared next week.

After the announcement on Sunday, opposition party DMK slammed Sasikala's appointment as CM saying she has no experience, while Sasikala accepted the post saying she will follow the path of Jayalalithaa.

"She has no experience. Was not even elected, don't know what her policies are. How can she be CM?" a senior leader of the party told NDTV.

Earlier MK Stalin had said, "One thing is certain that the government - in its present form - is clearly one that doesn't have the explicit legitimacy of having been elected by the people." "The people voted for a government to be headed by Jayalalithaa in May 2016 and not for one to be run by O Panneerselvam or any other person from Ms Jayalalithaa's household," he had said.

Reading out her acceptance speech at the MLAs’ meeting, Sasikala said, “I am under compulsion to fulfil the dreams of our Amma that the party should work for the welfare of the people even after a thousand years and accept the demands of her [Amma’s] children.”

Sasikala said, “Even now since all of you urged that the party’s general secretary and the Chief Minister should be one and the same, I am accepting your request.”

She thanked the MLAs and other party workers for having smashed the dreams of political rivals, who hoped to see cracks in the walls of the golden fort of the party. She also said the government would follow the path laid out by Jayalalithaa.

Saikala was unanimously appointed as Tamil Nadu's new Chief Minister on Sunday in a meeting held at Poes Garden. She is expected to be sworn in on February 7 or 9. O Panneerselvam tendered his resignation to the state's Governor on Sunday.

Sasikala would be the third woman CM of Tamil Nadu, and she has to win a Legislative Assembly seat within 6 months of her appointment as CM.

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