news Sunday, May 24, 2015 - 05:30
  Ever since Union Minister Arun Jaitley's ‘courtesy call’ made by to AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa after her disqualification as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu in October last year, rumors of BJP helping Jayalalithaa with her troubles have loomed large. Her acquittal, marred by the discovery of mathematical errors in the Karnataka High Court judgment that steeply increased the quantum of assets owned by Jayalalithaa, BJP leader and the original petitioner in the 1996 DA case, Subramanian Swamy now says that the BJP is protecting Jayalalithaa "There are people in our party who have been a little soft on Jayalalithaa and they think that it is in the larger interest of the country that Jayalalithaa should be protected, they are still at it," said Swamy in an interview to NDTV on Sreenivasan Jain's show on the Jayalalithaa DA case. While no names have been mentioned, the camaraderie between the BJP and the AIADMK is common lore. As Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi attended Jayalalithaa’s swearing in as Tamil Nadu’s Chief Minister in 2011 when the AIADMK swept the polls. The friendship was reciprocated when she attended his swearing-in as the Gujarat CM the following year.  When Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley paid Jayalaltihaa a visit at her Poes Garden residence in January, opposition parties screamed dissent questioning the visit considering the former’s appeal was in process in a Karnataka High Court.  Both PM Modi and Arun Jaitley were among the first to greet the fifth time Chief Minister following her swearing-in on Saturday.  Following Jayalalithaa’s conviction in September, the TN unit of the BJP headed by State President, Tamilisai Soundararajan made attempts to strategise itself as an alternative to both the DMK and AIADMK, and even set themselves a 122-plus seat target in the 2016 Tamil Nadu assembly elections. According to reports, plans to fly in 42 central ministers to create awareness on PM Modi’s welfare scheme across the state on May 16 was put off following Jayalalithaa’s acquittal - a strategy that could have worked if the judgement against Jayalalithaa had been upheld. But those plans seem to have changed. Following her acquittal, Tamilisai Soundararajan and leader Muralidhar Rao issued their greetings to the reinstated Chief Minister. In sharp contrast to the BJP's earlier stand, Soundarajan even expressed her happiness saying “It gives happiness that a situation has come when the paralysed administration of the last seven months will turn into one that will bring benefits to the people." Also read: DMK will keep the heat on Jayalalithaa in the DA case, fight it out till the end