End of an era with Jayalalithaa The TAMIL NADU POLITICS TO START A NEW ERA

Last night after 12 am, Apollo declared that Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Selvi Jayalalithaa passed away in the late hours of the previous day. The news spread across the country within seconds about Amma's death and the city started to mourn.

Many who speculated the announcement were either at homes (for safety reasons) glued to TV screens or outside the hospital. All television news channels broadcasted live coverage of Amma's body being taken to Pose Garden, her residence in Chennai.

However, no one thought the city would be stable for at least seven days. Everyone pictured a situation similar to what happened when MGR, another popular Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, died in 1987. Then, the situation was violent. People burnt down the buses and shops. The whole city was in a chaos.

However, the situation at Rajaji Hall, where people went to pay their tributes to Jayalalithaa, saw a very different picture. People from across the state came to see Amma for the last time.

The security was tight with at least one police officer at every step in 3 kilometers radius of Rajaji Hall. Moreover, spread in batches across the city to avoid any act of violence. There were paramilitary forces to ensure the security of guests and people.

One could see the huge crowd from Chepauk station moving towards Rajaji Hall. And as one reached Chindadripet station, one just moved with the crowd as their unsaid destinations were same.

Everybody followed the massive crowd with an eagerness to pay their respect. Some stopped by the large screen outside the entrance to get a closer view of Amma, while some waited below the camera to wave their hands when the camera swayed in the air to capture the crowd entering the venue.

And the reporters stopped a few people on their way to share their feelings on a national channel about their beloved Amma.

However, as soon as the crowd reached in front of the Rajaji Hall, which was packed with people, media, politicians and Amma's well-wishers, they entered inside the crowd as far as they could. The packed crowd moved together in all directions, as there was hardly any space to stand freely.

The entrance of the Rajaji Hall.

People stood on chairs, climbed trees and sat on the shoulders of friends or relatives to get a glimpse of Amma's dead body. In the midst of all, the organizers secured space for media to facilitate live coverage from the Rajaji Hall. However, at Marina, none of the media channels except Jaya TV was allowed to cover the burial ceremony.

The crowd was peaceful unless they were asked to talk about Amma when they cried. They spoke about the several schemes started by Amma that benefitted them. And they see her as their role model and motivation.

The crowd shifted to Marina beach and gathered along the way as the convoy slowly moved to the venue of burial. People stood in front of huge screens put up along the roadside to watch the final rituals of Amma performed by Sashikala.

The day ended with the ritual and speculation among the crowd about the conditions of the state in the days to come. Nevertheless, many believed it to be the end of an era in the politics of Tamil Nadu.

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