Jayalalitha’s portrait was unveiled by Speaker P Dhanapal in presence of Chief Minister E Palaniswami and deputy CM O Panneerselvam and placed at a distance from the portraits of former CMs and Tamil Nadu icons, including MG Ramachandran.
The Opposition DMK and Congress boycotted the event with the former moving to the Madras High Court for the removal of the portrait of a leader, who was involved in “corruption”.
DMK’s MK Stalin terming Monday as “black day” said, “This move has brought down the dignity and sanctity of the House. Despite opposition from DMK and other parties, Speaker has gone ahead and allowed this to happen. This is unacceptable.”
The Tamil Nadu government, meanwhile, defended its move to unveil Jayalalithaa’s portrait, highlighting her ‘landmark’ initiatives, including specific steps for women’s empowerment.
Hailing Jayalalithaa for her achievements, Cooperation Minister Sellur K Raju pointed out measures like the cradle baby scheme to protect girl children and starting the first all-women police stations in India.
He said Jayalalithaa had implemented welfare measures for people that were dreamt of by leaders like Periyar (rationalist leader E V Ramasamy) and former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister C N Annadurai.