V. K. Sasikala
|Secretary General of Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam|
|Assumed office |
|Deputy||T. T. V. Dhinakaran|
V. K. Sasikala
August 18, 1959
Thiruthuraipoondi, Thiruvarur District, Tamil Nadu, India
|Political party||Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam|
|Relatives||T. T. V. Dhinakaran (nephew)|
Vivekanandan Krishnaveni Sasikala, married name Sasikala Natarajan, is an Indian politician and businesswomen from Tamil Nadu, who was the general secretary of All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam. She was a friend and close aide of J. Jayalalithaa, the former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, who headed AIADMK from 1989 until her death in 2016. After Jayalalithaa's death, the party's general council unanimously appointed her as the interim secretary general of AIADMK, She was expelled from the party on August 2017. She is the aunt of T.T.V. Dhinakaran.
She was arrested along with Jayalalithaa on 7 December 1996 and was remanded to judicial custody for 30 days in connection with the Colour TV scam.During Jayalalithaa's three tenures as Chief Minister, Sasikala was alleged to have laundered huge amounts of wealth amassed by Jayalalitha. On 14 February 2017, a two-bench Supreme Court jury pronounced her guilty and ordered her immediate arrest in a disproportionate-assets case, effectively ending her chief ministerial ambitions.
Sasikala was born in a Tamil family from Thiruthuraipoondi who later moved to Mannargudi. Her marriage to M. Natarajan was presided over by DMK leader M. Karunanidhi. Her husband, was a public relations officer in the Government of Tamil Nadu, who worked closely with the District Collector of Cuddalore, V. S. Chandralekha, who in turn was very close to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. G. Ramachandran this helped Sasikala in gaining the friendship of Jayalalithaa and shaped her further life.
Meeting with Jayalalithaa
In the early 1980s, through V. S. Chandralekha, who was then the District Collector of South Arcot, and a friend of M.Natarajan, Sasikala gained acquaintance with Jayalalithaa, who was then the Propaganda Secretary of the Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam. Since Sasikala helped in video coverage of party meetings and distribution of policies of AIADMK through CD's, Sasikala and Jayalalithaa gradually became very close.
Temporary expulsion from AIADMK
On 19 December 2011, Jayalalithaa expelled Sasikala Natarajan and 13 others including Sasikala's husband M. Natarajan, T. T. V. Dhinakaran, their relatives, and Jayalalithaa's foster son V. N. Sudhakaran from the AIADMK. This act of Jayalalithaa was considered a way to prove that she was not under the influence of Sasikala and her family. The matter was resolved by 31 March 2012, when Sasikala Natarajan was reinstated as a party member after issuing a written apology.
General Secretary of AIADMK
In a meeting held on 29 December 2016 – the first meeting after Jayalalithaa's death on 5 December 2016 – the AIADMK general council unanimously appointed Sasikala as the party's general secretary.
Chief Minister Elect of Tamil Nadu
On 5 February 2017, Sasikala was unanimously elected as the AIADMK Legislature Party Leader by a meeting of all the MLAs in the party. Tamil Nadu Governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao accepted the resignation of Chief Minister O.Panneerselvam on 6 February 2017, and instructed him to continue to function as acting Chief Minister "until alternate arrangements are made". The governor delayed announcing VK Sasikala as the new Chief minister, waiting for the verdict of the misappropriation case on her. On february 14th 2017, VK Sasikala was convicted and sentenced to 6 years sentence in Bangalore parapana jail, and gave her 24 hours to surrender. Then the governor rejected her claims to become Chief minister. VK Sasikala then convened the party's MLA council in her capacity as the General secretary. There, Mr. Edpappadi k Palaniasamy was unanimously elected as the new Chief minister and he was sworn in the next day. 
Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam
The expulsion of Sasikala and her family led to the new party Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam. T. T. V. Dhinakaran was appointed as the assistant general secretary and Sasikala became the general secretary of Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam.
On 14 February 2017, the Supreme Court of India found Sasikala and her co-accused — Ilavarasi (her sister-in-law) and V. N. Sudhakaran (her nephew) — guilty of conspiring, laundering and amassing illicit wealth worth about ₹66.44 crore (equivalent to ₹259 crore or US$36 million in 2017) in the 1990s in a criminal conspiracy with Jayalalithaa. The three were sentenced to a four-year jail term. This restored in toto her earlier conviction in the case delivered on 27 September 2014, awarding a four-year jail term to her and her relatives, in addition to imposing a fine of ₹10 crore (US$1.4 million) each. The judgment stipulated that she and her accomplices would serve an additional 12 months in prison if they failed to pay the fine.
The Supreme Court refused her plea to surrender after a fortnight and to be allowed to have food from home, so Sasikala and Ilavarasi, but not Sudhakaran, presented themselves for imprisonment on 15 February 2017.
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