Meticulously researched chapter after chapter, vasanthi constructs a storyline that gives the reader a picture of a tender woman repeatedly punctured by acts of betrayal and humiliation : The Hindu
‘An objective rigous and textured view of Amma’ The Wire
Jayalalitha’s journey from gloamour girt of Tamil Films to political queen is the dramatic story of a woman who has risen again and again from humiliation , imprisonment and political defeat. Challenging the male dominated culture of Tamil Nadu politics to become four-time chief minister of Tamil Nadu.
She is enigmatic. She is imperious. She is adored and she is feared . She is deified by her admirers and reviled by her opponents. When she’s up in the sky in her helicopter her devotes fall on the ground and prostrate , just as they would in her presence. She stands apart, unreal and gigantic , just like those cut-out hoardings that her party workers have erected along the streets of Tamil Nadu.
During her election campaigns, crowds throng to see her, waiting for hours under the scorching sun, thirsty and hungry to her speak from a faraway canopied dais where she sits regally, resplendent in her green sari, fanned by air coolers. They voted her to power four times and she in return showered on them her numerous welfare schemes all of them carrying her name ‘Amma’ is written on when every household article the grinder, the mixie the rice bag, the laptop , the cycle and the water bottles . Even the goats and cows are gifts from her. Love her or hate her, Amma looms large the lives of the people of Tamil Nadu.
The transformation of J – Jayalalithaa from a glamour queen to a formidable politics is one of the most extraordinary stories of India Politics. Its story that needs , to be told, all the more so because it is also the story of how a woman transforms herself to survive and then become all-powerful in a male –dominated society.
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