Senior AIADMK leader O Panneerselvam was today elected as the next Tamil Nadu Chief Minister in place of Ms J Jayalalithaa, who was convicted and sentenced in the disproportionate wealth case.
A meeting of the AIADMK MLAs held at the Party headquarters in the city, unanimously elected Mr Panneerselvam, who is the present Finance Minister, as the new Legislature party leader.
Mr Panneerselvam would met Governor Dr K Rosiah and formally put forth his claim to form the Government.
Since Cabinet was a single unit and it was wholly appointed on the advice of the Ms Jayalalithaa, who had automatically lost her MLA seat and that of the CM’s post due to conviction under the Prevention of Corruption Act, the next Chief Minister would have to advice the Governor on appointing Ministers.
Consequently, Mr Panneerselvam was also expected to submit the names of the Ministers who would be part of his Cabinet.
The Legislature Party meeting was held immediately after Mr Panneerselvam returned from Bangalore after meeting Ms Jayalalithaa at the Parapanna Agrahara Central Prison earlier in the day along with senior Minister Natham Viswanathan, R Vaithilingam and Edapady Palanichamy.
This was for the second time Mr Panneerselvam would assume office as the Chief Minister.
When a similar situation arose in September 2001, Mr Panneerselvam was appointed as the CM after the Supreme Court annulled the appointment of Ms Jayalalithaa as the Chief Minister following her conviction in the TANSI Land Deal Case.
However, after she was acquitted by the Madras High Court, Ms Jayalalithaa returned as Chief Minister in March 2002. Though a couple of other names too were doing the rounds, AIADMK sources said that Mr Panneerselvam was unanimously appointed as the Legislature Party Leader at the MLAs that lasted close to 30 minutes.
The meeting was also attended by party MPs. A large number of party workers had thronged the party office in view of the meeting. As Mr Panneerselvam got down from the first floor hall after the meeting, he was mobbed by enthusiastic party workers. But other party leaders escorted him to his car.
Subscribe to our email newsletter.