Renowned agricultural scientist M S Swaminathan has deeply condoled the death of late chief minister and AIADMK general secretary J Jayalalithaa.
He said, “the passing away of the dynamic Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu Dr J Jayalalithaa leaves a void which is difficult to fill. She had a clear vision of Tamil Nadu being a State where everyone will enjoy food, livelihood and income security. She was the driving force behind the development of scientific institutions and universities. Her contributions in the area of water security through equity in sharing Cauvery water is unparalleled. She fought for justice to Tamil Nadu farmers in the Cauvery basin. She also fought for the rights of fishermen and but for her continuous monitoring Tamil Nadu fishermen would have had greater problems in Sri Lanka. Her scientific frame of mind is clear from the vision statements she had prepared and also for the biotechnology policy for the State.
She inaugurated the building of MSSRF in 1993 and quoted Thiruvalluvar on the pivotal role played by farmers in ensuring the achievement of what Subramanya Bharathi said that “every child woman and man should have enough food for a healthy and productive life”. She wanted to take Tamil Nadu to the first position in the country in all areas of development. Above all her attention was not only on advances in modern technology but also on the nutrition security of the poor. For this purpose, she established a network of Amma Unavagam to provide the needed food at a low cost. She is a leader who has left her footprints on the sands of time. I do hope that all political leaders will follow her example of single minded devotion to solving problems which affect the poor and underprivileged. The Trustees, scientists, scholars and staff pay their respects to the departed soul and will ever remain grateful for her contribution to the birth and growth of MSSRF.
I was a member of the State Planning Commission during her first term and Vice Chairman of the State Planning Commission during her third Term. Her sense of direction on the development of the state was visionary and inspiring. It is going to be a challenge to continue that legacy but this is the best tribute we can pay to her.”