Rally to Welcome Sasikala to Chennai Denied Gets a 'No' from Tamil Nadu Police

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A rally to welcome former AIADMK general secretary VK Sasikala back home in Chennai has been denied permission by Tamil Nadu police. Sasikala was supposed to reach the state capital on Sunday. However, her return has been deferred by a day.

TTV Dhinakaran said that she is currently resting at a resort in Devanahalli, near Bengaluru. She was released from prison on January 27 after completing four years in jail but having tested Covid positive on January 20, Jayalalithaa's aide continued her treatment at a Bengaluru hospital.

Sasikala was sentenced to four years imprisonment in February 2017 in the Rs 66 crore disproportionate assets case along with her sister-in-law J Ilavarasi and and Jayalalithaa's foster son VN Sudhakaran.

Her sister-in-law J Ilavarasi, who too is serving a jail term along with Sasikala in the corruption case and was found Covid-19 positive, was keeping well, the authorities said.

Her release comes at a time when Tamil Nadu is preparing for assembly elections in which her former party AIADMK takes on the DMK.

Sasikala was reportedly unwell at her prison cell for about a week before admitted to Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital by the prison doctors with a diagnosis of type II diabetes mellitus, hypertension, hypothyroidism, urinary tract infection (UTI) and suspected Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI).

The 63-year-old Sasikala is serving her prison term in a disproportionate assets case. The case pertains to the amassment of disproportionate assets to the tune of Rs 66.65 crore during Jayalalithaa's tenure as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu from 1991-1996.

In September 2013, a special court convicted Jayalalithaa to simple imprisonment of four years. She was also slapped with a Rs 100 crore fine and forced to step down as the CM. The three co-accused -- Sasikala, V.N. Sudhakaran, and Ilavarasi were also convicted, and fined Rs 10 crore each.

Jayalalithaa challenged the conviction in the Karnataka High Court, which acquitted her of all charges. But in 2017, the Supreme Court upheld the special court verdict convicting all four of them. Charges against Jayalalithaa were abated in view of her death on December 5, 2016.