Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam arrived in New Delhi this morning.
He will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hand over a letter that would request the government to bestow the Bharat Ratna on former chief minister J. Jayalalithaa and to install a bronze statue in the Parliament complex.
He will also seek financial assistance for damage caused by cyclone Vardah. Though Pannerselvam has met Modi in the past, the Monday meeting is expected to prove the mettle of the three-time chief minister, who hitherto had been heading the government only as a caretaker in the absence of his political mentor.
Ahead of his visit, the chief minister held discussions with Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao at Raj Bhavan on Sunday
It may be recalled that Jayalalithaa had served as a member of the Rajya Sabha between 1984 and 1989.
Currently, the complex has life-size bronze statues of late Chief Minister and AIADMK founder M.G. Ramachandran (MGR) and late Union Minister and DMK leader Murasoli Maran.
Both these statues were unveiled in December 2006 at separate functions held on consecutive days. MGR too was posthumously presented the Bharat Ratna by the then Rajiv Gandhi Government at the Centre.
During the first meeting of the Council of Ministers headed by Panneerselvam held on December 10, a resolution recommending Bharat Ratna award was adopted.
A decision was also taken to urge the Centre to unveil Jayalalithaa’s life-size bronze statue at Parliament complex.