AIADMK crisis: Party split divides siblings with Deepak in Sasikala camp, Deepa backs OPS

The AIADMK crisis went into overdrive on Tuesday after the Supreme Court on Tuesday convicted party general secretary VK Sasikala in the two-decade-old disproportionate assets case, and sentenced her to four years imprisonment.

With the conviction, Sasikala's dreams of occupying the chief minister's post has been dashed for at least the next 10 years.

Nevertheless, Sasikala nominated Edappadi Palanisamy, a senior minister, to succeed her as the leader of the AIADMK legislature party.

While power struggle has effectively split the AIADMK, it seems its ramifications have also been felt within the late chief minister's last remaining family members.

While Deepak Jayakumar, the nephew of late Jayalalithaa, has been firmly backing Sasikala, his sister Deepa, on the other hand, has come in open support of caretaker chief minister O Panneerselvam.

Jayalalithaa's niece Deepa Jayakumar. Sandhya Ravishankar/Firstpost

Jayalalithaa's niece Deepa Jayakumar. Sandhya Ravishankar/Firstpost

Media reports for a while also suggested that Deepak could be made the leader of the legislature party. However, no such development took place.

Deepak has been living a relatively anonymous life. According to The News Minute, he is a real estate developer who resides in Chennai.

According to another report in The Times of India, Deepak completed a MBA degree from the US.

Interestingly, it was Deepak along with Sasikala, who performed the last rites of Jayalalithaa on 6 December.

Deepa, on the other hand, has been working as a media academic in the United Kingdom.

According to a report in The Times of India, she made numerous attempts top meet her aunt over the years, but was not allowed to do so.

Back in 2014, following Jayalalithaa's release from prison, Deepa and her husband tried to meet the AIADMK chief, but weren't let in.

Even when Jayalalithaa was ailing in hospital, she was all alone as Deepa was turned away by the police at the hospital.

In January, Deepa announced her intention to plunge into active politics and disapproved of Sasikala being made the general secretary of the party.

Updated Date: Feb 15, 2017 13:30 PM

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