Banners on Jaya for PM show kneeling Sri Lankan president

In close-up, Jayalalithaa points, signalling the decisiveness of a leader. Three international leaders including President Obama listen deferentially. Kneeling in front of her is Mahinda Rajapakse, the Sri Lankan president, regularly attacked by Tamil Nadu political parties for alleged atrocities against his island’s ethnic Tamils. The tagline: ‘This is the mark of a prime minister.’

This dream scenario for the Tamil Nadu chief minister’s party is mounted on giant billboards in 10 locations in Coimbatore.  The AIADMK youth wing Ilaignar Mattrum Ilam Pengal Paasarai based in Coimbatore has put up the banners. ‘India is taken for a ride by many dominant  countries and only Amma can make India a stronger country,’ says CM Vishnuprabhu, the 31-year-old secretary of the youth wing. 

‘The Sri Lankan president is seen as a war criminal by Tamils and world nations; that’s why I’ve showed him kneeling down,’ he adds. But with the national election now just months away, the pitch for the 65-year-old as prime minister is not unexpected. Tamil Nadu elects 39 Lok Sabha members. The AIADMK won nine seats in the last general election and has just stitched state-level alliances with the CPM and the CPI. Agencies

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