A day after Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvam backed VK Sasikala for the post of AIADMK General Secretary, following the death of his predecessor, J Jayalalithaa, another senior leader and Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker M Thambidurai also batted for her to take over the reins.
Sasikala had even given suggestions to Jayalalithaa on party affairs and governance in the past, he said and urged her to take over the "reins" of AIADMK.
"At this juncture when Honourable Amma (Jayalalithaa) is not amongst us, respected Chinnamma (Sasikala) is the only person who is capable, who has (the) acumen and experience, to lead the AIADMK party," he said.
Sasikala was associated with Jayalalithaa for the last 35 years and had made "several sacrifices", he said.
"Due to political vendetta, false cases have been foisted against Chinnamma, and Chinnamma went to jail and underwent many struggles. Chinnamma protected Amma during such struggles," Thambidurai, also the AIADMK Propaganda Secretary, said in a statement.
"Chinnamma has given valuable suggestions to Amma regarding party administration and also on governance. Like this, the list of traits of Chinnamma can go on," he said.
He recalled that whenever "persons like me" went to Jayalalithaa to get directions, either during polls or other times for important decisions, she had "directed us" to consult Sasikala and implement them.
Sasikala had shown him the "right path" to follow and given him "innumerable" advices and suggestions and had stood shoulder to shoulder with Jayalalithaa during "testing times and historical moments," he said.
Sasikala possessed all the qualities to lead AIADMK, he said, adding, she was the only person "capable" of following the path taken by Dravidian veteran CN Annadurai, his party's founder, MG Ramachandran, and Jayalalithaa "in embracing the party cadres, without the considerations of caste and community".
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