On Dec 6, 2016 India witnessed a deep loss. Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Ms. J Jayalalitha passed away after battling death for last few weeks. When the news reached me I was sick myself. I say in front of my computer after taking my medication around 11.00 AM. Yahoo news displayed a Red Banner declaring the loss of Amma, as she is affectionately called. I did not cry.
I was recovering from cold and headache. I choose to take another day off and recover. I choose to go to bank to withdraw Rs.15000/-. Yet bank was running short of currency and could only issue Rs. 4000 per individual. Even for which there was a tedious process plus long queue. Which was all fine with me. I would not mind waiting in long queue for India to go black money free. Yet I was just recovering so I came back home. That is when I learnt that Jayalalitha had passed away.
I decided to take rest for the rest of the day. Instead I ended up watching Jayalaitha’s interview videos on YouTube for the rest of the day.
After reaching home, I searched on YouTube to watch the news on her demise. Instead I was taken to Jayalalitha’s interview with Karan Thapar video. I watched it entirely. Then I watched her interview with Simi Garewal. I was moved by this woman. I kept on watching all her videos all day long. This is what I did almost until the end of 6th December, 2016. Here is the summary of what I watched about Jayalalitha
1. Jayalaitha – A leader of strong character
Jayalaitha did not have a sound political background. Yet in a patriarchal political society of India she choose to rise against the voice of political nepotism. Her fight was not just against nepotism but her fight was against discrimination.
She challenged why an ordinary man cannot be participative of democratic legislature. She fought the dogma on why woman cannot be better leaders. She showed that if you are truly committed to the wellbeing of people, you can create a state that mourns for you on your funeral.
When Karan Thapar repeatedly tried to pull her down with his dumb and malicious motives, the way she handled him without losing her composure showed what a class act he was.
“It is people like you who have made me strong; who have strengthened my willpower and my ability to control my emotions.” – Jayalalitha to Karan Thapar on his interview.
My point is Jayalalitha is a leader of strong willpower, character and dedication. She believed in service to people was her votebank. She did not play the nepotism or dynastical political card.
She cared when nobody cared
About 5-6 fishermen were once stranded on Sri Lankan Shores. They were immediately help captive by the Srilankan Coastal Guard. It is Jayalalitha who had urged diplomatic assistance and got the tamil fishermen released. It was more than couple of years back. That news item was not even wide spread. But today on her demise I recollect that episode. Why a State Chief Minister would come all her way to save 6 fishermen? Because they were her people. They were tamilians.
3. Amma Hotels
You can survive with 25/- in State of TamilNadu. Even somebody earning as low as rs. 100/- day can still get 3 hearty meals for just Rs. 25 a day. With meals costing as less as Rs. 5 per plate, this vision was possible. And this is good quality food available at highly subsided rates for larger public benefit.
She was concerned towards her citizens like a mother. A mother knows to feed her kids.
4. I deserve vs. I serve
I also watched a video of Narendra Modi recorded before the Lok Sabha ELECTIONS. It was from a show called AAP KI ADALAT from India tv. In that interview Narendra Modi states that Congress is pissed off because an ordinary teaman is PM candidate contesting against them. Now, that’s unbearable thought to the dynastical family that had being ruling India for such a long time post-independence. It is more like I deserve to be the boss mentality and then suddenly emerges as people leader sweeping popularity and vote bank. It is like challenging their identity. And that unbearable to Congress.
This reminds me on an episode when Jayalitha was thrashed and saree torn when she held a rally. Someone who can send goons to dismantle a rally in understandable still. However, physically hurting a woman is even thinkable in few minds because they believed she was challenging what they deserved by default.
When you feel threatened by people who you think are nobody, then ego is bruised. And retaliation ensues. It is this that Jayalalitha had fought. The more such discriminatory attacks they hurled at her, the more stronger she became. She challenged the STATUS QUO MINDSET. She installed SERVITUDE TO PEOPLE as a leadership model. And to many that was unbearable. Because here she was not only doing what they never sincerely bothered about, but was also ruthlessly snatching away the votebank with her work alone.
Jayalaitha fought this. She fought “I deserve this power” mentality. She proved what woman can do in Politics. She stood for championing the cause of tamilians. She showed what can happen when a woman does not give up. She showed to all her vendetta creators that she would become stronger in moral strength, people support and willpower, as the more they kept sledging her with their vicious efforts.
She showed that when you serve people, they will support you. this is all about people. this is not about caste, power or dynasty. She proved democracy works the best when elected leaders act as ambassadors of goodwill for their people.
What Jayalalitha proved was – she could do what no man can. She became AMMA. And no man can become AMMA. That’s Jayalalitha. That’s AMMA.
And then I cried. And I wrote this.
Life Coach Venkat
Avi Peron Academy