Exactly 100 days after being expelled from the residence of Chief Minister and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam general secretary Jayalalithaa, her estranged friend V. K. Sasikala on Wednesday disowned her controversial relatives.
In a two-page statement first reported on ‘Jaya Plus' TV channel, she announced that she had snapped ties with all those who had indulged in activities against Ms. Jayalalithaa.
“What those who claimed to be my relatives and friends have done against ‘akka' (elder sister) is an unforgivable betrayal. Irrespective of who they are, such persons are unwanted people to me too,” Ms. Sasikala said in her statement, which is seen as an effort to seek a rapprochement with Ms. Jayalalithaa.
Ms. Sasikala, her husband M Natarajan and 12 others were expelled from the party on December 19. Since then, many cases were filed against four of her relatives, including Mr. Natarajan on various charges. Three of them were arrested and early this week, her brother V. Dhivaharan, was granted bail.
“Only a dormant partner”
Last month, answering questions in the Special Court in Bangalore, which is hearing a disproportionate case against Ms. Jayalalithaa and herself, besides two others, Ms. Sasikala said the Chief Minister was not involved with the affairs of the Jaya Publications.
She [Ms. Sasikala] alone operated the bank accounts and was taking care of the administration of the firm. Ms. Sasikala also said Ms. Jayalalithaa was only a “dormant partner” in Jaya Publications and Sasi Enterprises.
Addressing the party general council about 10 days after she took action in December, the AIADMK leader had said those who had been expelled from the party and caused suspicion, through their actions, to the leadership would never be forgiven.
Referring to the AIADMK leader's action in December, Ms Sasikala, in Wednesday's statement, said it was only after this development that she came to know of the reasons and background of the action.
She conceded that some of her relatives and friends, making of use of the fact that she [Ms. Sasikala] and Ms. Jayalalithaa lived in the same house, involved themselves in some “undesirable activities,” which had adverse implications for the party and created confusion.
That all this had left a blot on the “good name” of the party and some conspiracies were hatched against Ms. Jayalalithaa had saddened and shocked her, Ms Sasikala stated, adding that “what is true is that they all happened without my knowledge.”
Ms. Sasikala also said she did not have an iota of desire to join politics; nor did she desire to hold a big position in the party or become a Member of Legislative Assembly or a Member of Parliament or a Minister. “I have absolutely no interest in participating in public life.”
She added: “I would like to be a true ‘thangai' (younger sister) to ‘akka.' I have already dedicated my life to ‘akka.' Hereafter, I do not want to lead a life for myself but would like to be of help to ‘akka' to the extent possible.”
Tracing the genesis of her friendship with Ms. Jayalalithaa, she said she met the Chief Minister for the first time in 1984.
Gradually, their friendship grew and Ms. Jayalalithaa had accepted her as younger sister.
All that she had wanted to do was to assist Ms. Jayalalithaa so that the AIADMK leader's workload was reduced to some extent.
“From the day I met her for the first time, I have always thought of the well being of ‘akka' and have not even in my dreams thought of betraying her,” Ms. Sasikala said.