In a lesson to many politicians in India, the court verdict on Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J.Jayalalithaa sentencing her to four year jail term and a fine of Rs.100 crore comes as a major cleansing effort to make political leaders realise the fact that all citizens are equal before law and the Indian judiciary, with this case stands aloft worth saluting for its integrity.
Jayalalithaa was found guilty of amassing Rs 66.65 crore wealth disproportionate to known sources of her income during her first term as Tamil Nadu chief minister from 1991 to 1996.
While the verdict led to violence in Chennai, whose disqualification as a member of Tamil Nadu Assembly is automatic, it is reliably learnt that O. Panneerselvam will again be made the chief minister as was done in 2001 when she had stepped down as chief minister following a Supreme Court’s adverse verdict over criminal offences.
The actor-turned-politician made O. Panneerselvam, a senior minister in her government, the chief minister.
Otherwise, the 18-year trial of the case saw five judges – AS Pachapure, AT Munoli, BM Mallikarjunaiah, MS Balakrishna and John Michael D’Cunha, who continued the saga and Karnataka government, which played host to the trial has spent more the 2.8 crore.
It is ironic that Jayalalithaa, who was born in Mysore and studied in Bishop cotton Girls High school in Bangalore moved to Chennai with her actress mother and entered films at the age of 16. Though her first film was a Kannada movie, she became successful with her Tamil movie “Vennira Aadai” and rose to fame with “Aayirathil Oruvan” playing the lead female role against M.G. Ramachandran (MGR). She never turned back and went to act in more than 100 films in Tamil, Telugu and Kannada.
She later entered politicis joining MGR’s AIADMK and became his chosen successor and led the party to win 1991 elections after the death of MGR. She became the natural choice to be the chief minister but corruption among her coterie led to today’s fate or natural justice that came to her in a state she was born.