At a time when DMDK Chief Vijayakant has been out of active politics for a few months after battling ill-health, his wife Premalatha was appointed as Treasurer of the party on Friday. The decision was announced at the DMDK headquarters in Chennai in a meeting where she was unanimously selected by District Secretaries. Till now, though Premalatha was considered to be an important decision maker in the party, she has held no formal post.
Following the meeting, Premalatha told reporters that Vijayakant, who was recently admitted at a Chennai hospital, will be going abroad for treatment. She also said that the actor-turned-politicianâ€™s health has declined in the past few months. Vijayakant had returned following treatment in the US for five weeks.
Premalathaâ€™s appointment also comes thirteen years after 'Captain' Vijayakant founded the DMDK on the plank of ending dynastic politics. She follows a line of family members of the actor-turned politician, who have either taken an active plunge or expressed interest in joining the party.
This decision comes close to a year after Vijayakant's brother-in-law LK Sudhish was elected as the party's deputy secretary. For a party which claimed it was opposed to dynastic rule, successive appointments have proven otherwise. Her appointment also comes after Vijayakantâ€™s son Vijay Prabhakaran hinted at joining active politics in early October.
On October 6, Vijay Prabhakaran made an appearance at an event organised by the part at Anakaputhur near Kancheepuram. While he does not hold any position in the party yet, he presided over the event and distributed freebies to supporters.
In his speech, Vijay said that he had taken up two ventures - preparing dogs for competitions and owning Chennai Smashers, a franchise part of the Premier Badminton League and been victorious both.
"I think I have succeeded in two ventures that I took up because I liked them. And today, knowingly or unknowingly, I stand on a stage that I like," he said. "I was named after the Prabhakaran from Sri Lanka. But now I understand the greatness of that name. I will live up to this name," he said.
He further claimed Vijayakant, who has been battling ill health, will soon return to active politics and that he had asked for the event to be wrapped up soon as it seemed likely to rain.
"My father wanted the women leave soon because it may rain. But I said that the women in our party are brave. They look up to Premalatha Amma. Nothing will happen to them," said Vijay.
The DMDK, which was routed in successive elections in 2014 and 2016 did not take part in the RK Nagar bye-elections and are yet to announce a decision on the Lok Sabha polls that will be conducted next year.