Days after Chief Minister and AIADMK supremo Jayalalithaa appealed to people to vote for her party in three constituencies in Tamil Nadu and a lone seat in Puducherry, top Ministers and ruling party men are now banking on her appeal by distributing copies of it to woo voters.
Led by Finance Minister and AIADMK treasurer O Panneerselvam, AIADMK functionaries are distributing photocopies of Jayalalithaa’s November 13 statement to people in the poll-bound constituencies to seek votes for their party as campaign draws to a close tomorrow.
Polls to Thanjavur, Aravakkurichi and bypoll for Thiruparrankundram and Nellithope (Puducherry) constituencies are slated to be held on November 19.
Jayalalithaa, for the first time since she was admitted to hospital on September 22, had urged people to “give your love and support to AIADMK in the present polls as well, remembering such innumerable schemes to enhance the people’s standard of living.”
While campaigning at Thirupparankundram, Panneerselvam, distributing copies of Jayalalithaa’s appeal, said people overwhelmingly supported the AIADMK chief and “because of Amma’s influence, DMK’s (poll) camps are going empty.”
Listing the welfare schemes, he said a whopping Rs 68,211 crore was set apart for welfare schemes and subsidies alone in the State’s tax free budget.
“All over India, no other government has allocated so much funds for the people (their welfare),” he claimed.
A total of 1.91 crore families get 20 kg rice for free ensuring food security in Tamil Nadu. Annually, 1.67 crore women and 1.65 crore men get free sarees or dhotis, he said.
Panneerselvam, now incharge of portfolios previously held by Jayalalithaa, spoke on the 8 gram free gold for women beneficiaries under ‘Thallikku Thangam (Mangalsutra) scheme, saying in the past five years, 7,72,643 women have benefited.
Besides Panneerselvam, all ministers and senior functionaries are actively campaigning in the constituencies.
In her appeal, the AIADMK supremo had also said “I have taken rebirth because of your prayers and worship. I would like to share this happy news with you in the first place.”
Stating that she does not have any grievances in view of people’s “great love” for her, she said, “by God’s grace, very soon, by recovering fully, I am waiting to resume work.”
DMK’s campaign is steered by party top leader M K Stalin, who is targeting the ruling party on every issue, including Cauvery and does not fail to hurl the “this government is non-functional and is not bothered about the travails of the people,” taunt every time.