Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Wednesday, 18 November, said that Sasikala’s release from prison will not have any impact on the AIADMK.
His comment comes as Sasikala’s lawyers started the process to deposit a fine of Rs 10 crore on her behalf in the court, to facilitate her early release from prison.
As per reports, the chief minister was speaking to the media after participating in the Tamil Nadu medical counselling on Wednesday evening when he spoke. In response to a question on whether VK Sasikala’s release from the Parappana Agrahara prison in Bengaluru will have any impact inside AIADMK, the CM said, “You tell us what changes will happen. As far as we are concerned, no changes will happen.”
VK Sasikala has been serving her four-year sentence in Bengaluru’s Parappana Agrahara prison since February 2017 after she was convicted in the Disproportionate Assets case. According to an RTI reply provided to a Bengaluru-based lawyer and activist Narasimha Murthy, she is likely to be released from the prison in January 2021.
As per the response, if Sasikala paid a fine of Rs 10 crore, she is expected to be released from the jail in January 2021. Otherwise, her release date is likely to be pushed to February 2022. Sasikala had also written to her counsel in October to keep the fine amount ready so that she can come out of the prison at the earliest.
The Supreme Court had overruled Karnataka High Court’s order and had found Sasikala and other co-accused guilty. The apex court convicted them and awarded them a punishment of four years imprisonment and Rs 10 crore fine.
Her likely release from prison, just in time for the Assembly polls in Tamil Nadu in 2021, is expected to create a flutter in the political landscape of Tamil Nadu ahead of the polls.
It may be recalled that Sasikala chose Edappadi K Palaniswami to take over the Chief Minister’s position when the AIADMK had split into two factions after the demise of former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.
(This story was first published in The News Minute and has been republished with permission)