O Panneerselvam, the ‘number 2’ in AIADMK, was on Sunday appointed as the new chief minister of Tamil Nadu for the second term, a day after J Jayalalithaa was found guilty in an 18-year-old disproportionate assets case.
Jayalalithaa was sent to 4-year-jail term alongwith the fine of Rs 100 crore. Her shocking verdict led to sporadic violence in Tamil Nadu by her massive supporters and a state of political instability led to a chaotic situation in the state.
On Sunday, Sept 28, after a meeting of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) leaders at the party headquarters in Chennai, it was decided that Jayalalithaa’s loyalist O Panneerselvam will succeed her as the next chief minister of Tamil Nadu. Interestingly, this is not the first time when OPS will represent AIADMK government in Tamil Nadu.In a case of history repeating itself again, the OPS was appointed as the Tamil Nadu CM in 2001, when Jayalalithha had to go to jail in another corruption case.
How OPS started his political career? Born on January 14, 1951, 63-year-old Panneerselvam began his political career in 1996 when he became the chairman of Periakulam municipality. Before that, he owned agricultural lands and a tea shop. The year 2001 proved to be lucky for him as he contested and won the assembly elections from Periakulam and became the PWD minister.
In same year in 2001, OPS was sworn-in as the TN CM when Jayalalithaa was barred from holding office by the apex court. During his six-month tenure as Tamil Mnadu chief minister, Panneerselvam did not sit in the CM’s chair and he was also reluctant to sign the files. In March 2002, he resigned from the CM’s post as the Supreme Court had overturned Jayalalithaa’s conviction and was again reinstated as the PWD minister.
In May 2006, he served as the leader of the AIADMK legislative party and the Leader of the Opposition in the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly for about 2 weeks. Since 2011, he was the state Finance Minister in the Jayalalithaa cabinet. Besides, he has been twice elected to the Tamil Nadu assembly from Periakulam constituency.
Like his previous tenure as the TN CM, this time too, it is expected that OPS will head a ‘puppet government’, with jailed Jayalalithaa, calling the shots. Panneerselvam graduated in BA and has three children from his marriage with Mrs Vijayalakshmi. (OneIndia News)