AIADMK coordinator O Pannerselvam, on Monday, October 25, said that a discussion on if VK Sasikala could be included in the party will be held. The decision will be taken in consultation with the party cadre, the former Tamil Nadu Deputy Chief Minister said while interacting with the media in Madurai. This comes close on the heels of the statement by the other top party leader, Edappadi K Palaniswami, who said that Sasikala can never join AIADMK.
During an event in Madurai, Pannerselvam said that anyone can join politics and it is upto the public to accept them. "AIADMK party was started by MGR, keeping in mind the cadres of the party, and they will be in the forefront to serve the public. Now we have become one. Hence the cadres of the party will discuss and decide if Sasikala will join the AIADMK," said OPS.Incidentally, in March this year, O Pannerselvam had said that AIADMK was willing to reconsider including Sasikala in the party if she is willing to accept the democratic set-up of the party. This statement by Pannerselvam was made a few days after Sasikala announced to stay away from political life.
During his interview with the media in March, OPS went on to say that he never had doubts about Sasikala and they have travelled together with late CM J Jayalalithaa. It is to be noted that this statement was made before the Tamil Nadu Assembly election held in April 2021. As both Sasikala and Pannerselvam belong to the Thevar community, this vote bank is crucial for the AIADMK.
Sasikala, the former General Secretary of AIADMK, on October 16, sparked controversy by paying an emotional homage at Jayalalithaa's memorial. This move, which was a day ahead of AIADMK's golden jubilee on October 17, was seen as a significant step, as Sasikala for the past several months had been talking about reclaiming the party from its current leaders after completing her prison sentence in the disproportionate assets case.
Taking a jibe at Sasikala visiting Amma's memorial, AIADMK leader Jayakumar had said, "For the performance, Sasikala managed to pull at the memorial, an Oscar can be given, but never a place in AIADMK."
Sasikala returned to Tamil Nadu in early February 2021 after serving four years at the Parappana Agrahara central prison in Bengaluru for the Rs 66.65 crore disproportionate case.