Heralding the "chinnamma" era in AIADMK and Tamil Nadu politics, party supremo VK Sasikala on Sunday was unanimously elected as the leader of the legislature party, paving the way for her to take over as the next chief minister of Tamil Nadu. Soon, O Panneerselvam resigned as the chief minister. His resignation was accepted by Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao on Monday.
However, reactions to her elevation were mostly negative.
Principal opposition party DMK slammed Sasikala's elavation, calling it "murder of democracy". Working president MK Stalin told PTI, "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 Jayalalithaa's household."
Stalin further added, "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."
Congress, DMK's ally in the state, too lashed out at the AIADMK. The party called Sasikala's elevation as a 'black day' for Tamil Nadu.
“We cannot and people will not accept her as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. Her contribution to AIADMK is zero, did nothing for the people of Tamil Nadu,” Senior Congress leader EVKS Elangovan was quoted by Times Now as saying.
Rajya Sabha MP and Tamil Nadu leader P Chidambaram tweeted to express his displeasure over the decision.
It is the right of AIADMK MLAs to elect their leader. It is the right of the people to ask if the leader deserves to be CM
— P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) February 6, 2017
Looking back with pride, TN CM chair was occupied by Kamaraj and Anna. AIADMK and PEOPLE OF TAMILNADU are now moving in opposite directions. — P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) February 6, 2017
RSS ideologue S Gurumurthy tweeted out, saying:
Sasikala the new CM. No celebrations. No crackers. No cheer. Eerie silence. Never seen a person so hated within n outside party becoming CM
— S Gurumurthy (@sgurumurthy) February 6, 2017
While not directly criticising the decision to make the AIADMK supremo the new chief minister, the BJP state president Tamilisai Soundarrajan told CNN-News18, "As general secretary, she would be involved with the affairs of her party but as Chief Minister she would be engaged in administering the state and hence the AIADMK paving way for Ms Sasikala to become Chief Minister cannot be construed as internal affairs of that party.”
PMK, a party with a strong base among the Vanniyar community in north Tamil Nadu, slammed the move to make Sasikala the chief minsiter. Party partriarch S Ramadoss told The Hindu, "AIADMK got votes only due to Jayalalithaa and now a person who is no way connected to the people of the state has been selected to be the chief minister. This is nothing but deceiving the voters who voted for AIADMK,"
However, not all reactions were negative. Leaders from the VCK and CPM along with the Dravidian parent organisation, Dravidar Kazhagam (DK) welcomes the move.
“It augurs well for the State that she has been elected unanimously, and there will no longer be two power centres, eliminating any divergence in decision-making, while making her the main person responsible for all decisions,” K Veeeramani of the DK was quoted by The Hindu as saying.
With inputs from PTI
Updated Date: Feb 06, 2017 17:46 PM