The Supreme Court today emphatically rejected Sasikala’s request for more time to surrender before a Bangalore trial court that convicted her in the disproportionate assets (DA) case.
“We intend to pass no further orders after directing her to surrender immediately. Hope you understand the meaning of immediately Mr Tulsi?” Justice Ghose asked Sasikala’s advocate KTS Tulsi today.
Yesterday, the top court upheld her conviction+ by the trial court in 2014. It also ordered her to surrender immediately to serve her sentence of four years in jail.
“We don’t intend to change a word of that order,” said Justice PC Ghose, one of the two SC judges on the bench that upheld the conviction.
Today’s SC’s decision came soon after she reinducted her once-expelled nephew into the party and elevated him to the position of deputy general secretary. Sasikala’s nephew TTV Dhinakaran had been expelled by late AIDMK supremo and Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa in 2011.
Sasikala is now attempting to build and solidify her own little coterie in the AIADMK before she goes to jail. Yesterday, AIADMK lawmakers who support Sasikala elected Edappadi K Palaniswami+ as the legislature party leader. Sasikala would prefer Palaniswami become CM and not the current caretaker CM O Panneerselvam .
After yesterday’s decision, Sasikala sought more time from Supreme Court to surrender before the trial court. She said she had to make some personal arrangements before surrendering. “Irreparable damage” would be caused to her if she weren’t granted some time, she told the SC.
The two others, whose conviction was upheld in the disproportionate assets case, also moved the Supreme Court with the same plea as Sasikala’s.
Earlier today, the state’s opposition DMK asked all 89 of its lawmakers to present themselves in Chennai immediately.
Looming large is the possibility of a floor test to determine who commands support in the House – the current caretaker chief minister Panneerselvam or Palaniswami.
Sasikala, who was angling for the chief minister’s post herself – before the upholding of her conviction derailed her plans – is trying to establish and solidify a group of AIADMK lawmakers and party members who will only allegiance to her and not to Panneerselvam. This, likely so he can run state and party affairs from prison via ‘remote control’.
“The governor now can either have a composite floor test between the heads of two rival groups (within the AIADMK) and decide who will be CM, or, if he finds that one group has overbuilt more (of a) majority, he can also swear in that person and ask him to prove his majority on the floor of the house,” attorney general Mukul Rohtagi told ANI.
SOURCE: Times of India