A special court in Bangalore sentenced Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa and her three associates , N Sasikalaa, J Elavarasi and V N Sudhakaran to four years imprisonment in the Rs 66.65-crore disproportionate assets case today the 27th of September 2014. Immediately after, JJ complained of having chest pain and was transferred to the hospital. She has automatically been disqualified from the post of CM and legislative assembly of Tamilnadu. She has been imposed a fine of 100 crore rupees and her confidants along with her have been imposed a fine of 10 crore rupees.
On 14th June 1996 Subrahmanian Swami, then Janatha Party leader, filed a complaint in court that led to a probe against Jayalalithaa. It was alleged that after assuming the Chief Ministership of TN in 1991, the value of her assets increased from a mere 2.1 Crore to 66.65Crores in 1996. Based on the complaint the Court directed an investigation into the matter. An FIR was registered by the Police on 1th September 1996.
In 2001 Jayalalitha was returned to power in TN again. The case was transferred to Bangalore in 2003 by the Supreme Court on a petition filed by DMK leader Anbahagan alleging that a fair trial is not possible in TN against her, while she is in power.
After 18 years of trials and deliberations finally a verdict was issued today in the case by the Supreme Court.
JJ had a colourful life both as an actress and as a politician. Born on 24th February 1948, she was a popular film star in Indian Cinema having appeared in Hindi, Tamil, Kannada and Telugu movies. She is fondly called ‘Amma’ (‘Mother’) and sometimes ‘Puratchi Thalaivi’ (‘Revolutionary Leader’) by her followers. JJ was introduced to politics by former CM of TamilNadu M.G.Ramachandran.
MGR recommended her to Rajya Sabha because of her fluency in English. She remained a member of Rajya Sabha from 1984 to 89. After a stroke in 1984, MGR was bedridden and JJ led the party campaign for 1984 general elections. After the death of MGR in December 1987, the party split into two, one section supporting MGR’s widow Janaki and the other favouring JJ. Janaki was elected CM in 1988 with the support of 96 members and the help of the then speaker P.H.Pandian who dismissed six member to make her ascend easier. The central Government used Article 356 to dismiss Janaki Government and imposed president’s rule in the state. JJ won the 1989 election to become the CM .
Jayalalitha’s First term as CM of Tamil Nadu in 1991
JJ became the first elected female chief minister and the youngest ever chief minister of Tamil Nadu, serving the full tenure from 24 June 1991 to 12 May 1996. Her first term was marked with excesses and high level corruption. In her first term as CM, she introduced Cradle baby scheme and woman only police stations, banks and libraries.
During her first term, JJ’s thozhi Sasikala became the number 2 power behind the throne and often addressed as china Amma or CM2 within the party. In 1995, Jayalalithaa adopted Sasikala’s nephew V N Sudhakaran as her son, and funded his extravagant wedding. On September 1995 JJ hosted a reception banquet for over 150,000 guests for her foster son’s wedding in the 20 hectare grounds in Madras. The wedding was reported to have cost over 750 Million Indian rupees. . A fortress topped with cannons and winged mythological creatures was constructed from plywood at the entrance of the wedding grounds. The 5 km drive from the temple to the grounds was strewn with rose petals and lined with 600 Grecian columns strung with coloured lights along with giant flex models of ancient Indian princes in erotic poses. JJ was preparing Sudhakaran for the ultimate honour, to be her political heir.
1996 TN State elections
Both the party and JJ lost the 1996 elections after her excesses of first term. The wedding caused widespread resentment against her, though later JJ claimed that the expenses were paid by the bride’s party. Needless to say AIADMK won just 4 seats in the assembly. Overseas newspapers like straits Times of Singapore described JJ as the Imelda Marcos of India comparing her collection of shoes with that of the wife of former Philippines dictator.
Second Term of JJ as CM in 2001
In 2001, JJ was barred from standing as a candidate because of a guilty verdict from the court on criminal offenses including obtaining property belonging to the state. Despite this, AIADMK won the 2001 election and JJ was installed as Chief Minister as a non-elected member of state assembly. Her appointment was legally voided in September 2001. Panneer Selvam was appointed as Binami Chief Minister to overcome the ruling. In March 2002 JJ assumed the position of CM once more having been acquitted of some charges by the Madras High Court. This cleared her way to contest mid-term poll from Andipatti constituency.
JJ’s second term as CM was much better compared to her first term. She started displaying the qualities of a seasoned and matured political administrator.
AIADMK lost power in 2006 state elections and Karunanidhi became the CM of Tamilnadu.
JJ’s Third term as CM in 2011
On 16th May 2011 JJ sworn in as CM for the third time. On December 2011, she expelled thozhi Sasikala and 13 other close associates from AIADMK. But on 31st March Sasikala was reinstated as a party member.