Jayalalithaa ‘knows her stuff’: A journalist shares an anecdote with Amma, which shows why she was respected and feared

J Jayalalithaa breathed her last on December 5 and Senior AIADMK MLA O Panneerselvam was sworn in as the new chief minister.

By: Trends Desk | Updated: December 6, 2016 2:16 pm
Jayalalithaa oassed away on December 5 at 11:30 at Apollo hospital in Chennai Jayalalithaa oassed away on December 5 at 11:30 at Apollo hospital in Chennai

As Tamil Nadu and, in fact, even rest of the country mourns the loss of the iconic leader J Jayalalitha, who breathed her last at 11.30 pm on December 5, social media platforms have been flooded with condolence messages. From President Pranab Mukherjee to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, politicians from across India tweeted out messages remembering the 68-year-old AIADMK chief as the revolutionary figure that she was.

People could agree or disagree with her style of politics but there was no ignoring the larger-than-life image she had cultivated over the years. A Brahmin born in Karnataka, she came out to be the face of the party that thrived on Dravidian movement. From her struggle as a female politician who fought against the male patriarchy to not only carve a niche for herself in regional politics but have a say in the national arena as well.

WATCH | Tamil Nadu CM J Jayalalithaa’s Life Journey

Social media is abuzz with people paying their respects to Jayalalithaa, many have even taken to the medium to share anecdotes with Amma themselves or stories they’ve heard from others – each giving an insight into the life of a political leader that has piqued the interest of many.

One such story was shared by former managing editor of Yahoo India Prem Panicker, in a series of tweets. The story gives a glimpse into the kind of administrator Jayalalithaa was. He narrated an incident his late uncle, who was the deputy head of Public Works Department (PWD) in Tamil Nadu, had witnessed when Amma was a few weeks into her first term. PWD wanted her approval for a new project, but Jayalalithaa simply ‘reeled’ off a series of previous projects by the department – simply off-the-cuff – demanding an explanation as to why the previous mess had not been cleared first. She ended the meeting, saying, “Bring me the person responsible for this mess, then I’ll consider the new proposals”.

This anecdote is a brillaint example of Jayalalithaa’s reputation of being an edrudite shd shrewed politician.

WATCH | Tamil Nadu CM J Jayalalithaa Passes Away After Suffering Cardiac Arrest

Read the tweets here.

The incident reminds of a similar story shared by Justice Markandey Katju who narrated his meeting with Jayalalithaa after she was admitted to the hospital in September. Read it here.

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