She had Rs 66.65 crores of property in proxy accounts. Land assets spanning over 1,200 hectares (over 1000 football fields) which included farm houses, bungalows, agricultural land, and a full-sized tea estate. Over 750 pairs of shoes. 10,500 expensive sarees, and 91 luxury watches. One of the raids at her house led to recovery of 800 Kg silver, and 28 Kg gold. She was not some high-flying businesswoman. But a politician named Jayalalitha. And she surely lived like an Empress. It is impressive, even for a politician. Even though politicians are supposed to serve the people, and not serve by them. This is disheartening.
Her name is in the Guinness book of world record. But not for the right reasons.
In 1995, during her first term as Chief Minister, she organised an obscenely lavish wedding for her ‘foster son’ Sudhagaran. The Guinness record book notes that over 1,50,000 guests were invited to the wedding at a 50-acre ground in Chennai. But what saddens me more is that, at a time when 276 million people in India live on less than Rs 75 a day. When people in this country, have to fight for their most basic rights. Most fundamental of necessities. She is going away just as the way she lived, king-sized, with a huge fanfare. (Source: FirstPost) Hail, the great nation of India, where people love to idolize personalities as if the hundreds of idol-gods we already worship are not enough. Throughout her tenure as CM of Tamil Nadu, she had misused the power bestowed upon her. Her party, AIADMK, used all the populist measures in order to stay in power. This often compromised on real growth. Issues that really matter. But this hasn’t stopped politicians to come to power, again and again, raping and looting the taxpayers, at their whims and fancies. In 2014, she was sentenced for four years on charges of corruption in an epic case that lasted for eighteen years. In stead of going to prison, she complained of chest pain and was sent to the hospital in stead. Even after that when she did go to the prison, it took her 21 days to get out of it. That is the power of justice in our country – made and served only to the weakest.
“Fiesty Amaa”, “Gritty Amma no more” – are some of the headlines decorating the politician who has breathed her last few hours ago. But it is this fanfare that worries me. This blind worship. This herd mentality which makes us a follower without understanding, a believer without questioning the faith. . .