DMK party president MK Stalin, while addressing a rally on Saturday, announced that his first course of action, if his party comes to power in the state, would be to investigate former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa’s 'mysterious' death and imprison those found responsible. Stalin was in Tiruvannamalai district to support CN Annadurai, the party's candidate for the Lok Sabha elections. He further questioned if Jayalalithaa was even alive during the 2016 bye-election in the Thiruparankundram assembly constituency.
Stalin's statement comes a day after the Madras High Court set aside the election of AIADMK legislator AK Bose (who passed away last year) in the 2016 bye-election. The court pointed out that the Election Commission of India (ECI) does not have powers to permit affixing thumb impression on the nomination papers, which need to be signed by the party's general secretary, a post that was then held by Jayalalithaa.
The bench further pointed out that there was no concrete proof to show that AIADMK supremo Jayalalithaa affixed her thumb impression on the forms with a conscious mind.
The DMK President's arguments come at a time when the Arumughasamy Commission is still probing the death of the former Chief Minister.
At the rally, he also highlighted the High Court order to emphasise the 'mystery' surrounding Jayalalithaa's death.
“Dr Saravanan, our candidate who lost that bye-election, goes to court and argues that it was not CM Jayalalithaa's thumb impression. He asks for an investigation on the same and the disqualification of the MLA. The case went on for a long time," he explained.
"On Friday, we got the verdict that it was indeed not Jayalalithaa's thumb impression and the court asked how the Election Commission could allow this. The High Court has also said that then Election Commissioner Rajesh Lakhoni was a mouthpiece of the ruling party. I ask, during the Thiruparankundram election time, was Jayalalithaa really alive? Doesn't this doubt arise?" he asked.
The DMK leader admitted that Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam was the first to raise doubt regarding Jayalalithaa's death.
"OPS went to Amma's samadhi (resting place) and did meditation for 40 minutes. He even spoke to her spirit," the DMK chief said sarcastically.
"He said there is some mystery in her death and an investigation must be conducted. Who set him right after that? Modi. He left his Prime Minister's job and did 'Katta panchayat' job. He brought them (EPS and OPS) together. We had also said a proper investigation should be done… the person who died is not some 'kuppan or suppan'. She was the Chief Minister of a state," Stalin said.
"We have several differences with Jayalalithaa - be it ideology, between our parties and our politics. We could even be enemies but that is different. A Chief Minister has passed away. So, I have been saying continuously and repeat here in Tiruvannamalai - we will come to power and draft schemes, solve problems and deal with the basic necessities of people. That is one side. But beyond that, there is a mystery in the death of then Chief Minister Jayalalithaa. We will thoroughly investigate this and find who is responsible. They will be brought to trial and receive punishment. They will all be jailed. This will be my first action," said Stalin at the rally, adding that the true cadre of the AIADMK will be glad to hear this.