Party observes MGR's 24th death anniversary

The 24 death anniversary of former Chief Minister and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) founder M.G. Ramachandran was on Saturday utilised by the party yet again to demonstrate its faith in the leadership of the AIADMK general secretary and Chief Minister Jayalalithaa.

Though it was not uncommon for members of the party to raise slogans hailing Ms. Jayalalithaa at events organised by the organisation, the mood of the party members who gathered on the Marina to join their leader in paying homage to the party founder was palpable, given the expulsion of Ms. Jayalalithaa's long time friend V.K. Sasikala and many of her relatives from the party early this week.

The crowd cheerfully responded when the AIADMK's senior leader P.H. Pandian, addressing the gathering, said that no force on the earth could take on her who had both the “power of the people and the power of the divine.” There was none to defeat her.

Praising Ms. Jayalalithaa for nurturing the legacy of MGR and safeguarding the interests of members of the party, Mr. Pandian said the AIADMK leader always enjoyed the popular support when she took decisions concerning the government or the party.

Later, the party treasurer and Finance Minister O. Paneerselvam read out the pledge.

Apart from calling upon the party members to commend the Chief Minister for the State Government's various welfare measures and schemes, he urged them to be “true workers” of the party general secretary.

While referring to Ms. Jayalalithaa, he kept describing her as “the permanent general secretary” of the party. Before getting down from the specially-put up dais at the entrance of the MGR samadhi, Ms. Jayalalithaa greeted her party members, who were present in large numbers.

Earlier, Ms. Jayalalithaa, accompanied by ministerial colleagues and senior leaders including M. Thambidurai and V. Maitreyan, paid floral homage at the samadhi.