Saturday, 5 November 2011

Blow after blow for Amma!

It appears Amma’s fortunes are hitting an all time low. An auspicious Friday turned out to be a black Friday for Amma…as the day was filled with disappointment and heartbreaking news for Amma.

First blow was the order of the Madras High Court staying Jaya’s decison to shift the Anna Centenary Library to DPI complex.  The second blow was given by the Supreme Court which dismissed her plea for exemption of appearance from the Bengaluru Special Court which is hearing the assets case against her.

As Jayalilathaa is being constantly wrapped on the knuckles by the Judiciary…that brings us to the question…Is Jaya misguided and surrounded by a bunch of wrong advisers? Her decision to shift the Anna Centenary Library from Kotturpuram and convert the building into a super specialty pediatric hospital is not gone down well not only with her rivals but among the general public too.  Writers and artists are up in arms against the decision of Amma to shift the library.   Built on an 8 acre land with a 3.48 lakh square foot structure…this world class library is lauded by every one for its elegance, aesthetic design and collection of books.   Not everyone is ready to buy Jayalalitha’s argument that it’s being shifted for the improvement of child health care.

With this act Jayalilathaa has made it very obvious that she is narrow minded and is not able to tolerate the library which was built in a space that was identified by her during her 2001 regime to build the new secretariat.  The Madras High Court which granted an indefinite stay against the government’s decision was vociferous in its observations during the course of the hearing.   The argument of Advocate General Navaneetha Krishnan on behalf of the government invited caustic remarks from the Division Bench.   In fact at one point of time the Bench asked Navaneetha Krishnan “Are you an Advocate General or a party man?”  The AG’s arguments that there were large scale corruption in collecting amount to the tune of 177 crores from local bodies and utilizing the same for constructing this library and that the library caters only to urban students and not rural students failed to cut ice with the First Bench of the Madras High Court.  

Whispers doing rounds is that…given Jaya’s obstinacy, there is all likelihood that she will go on appeal to the Supreme Court against the decision of the Madras High Court. 

The second blow for Amma came in the form of dismissal of her petition to furnish her replies under Section 313 Cr.P.C. in writing and for exemption of personal appearance.  Jayalalitha had earlier appeared before Special Judge Mallikarjunaiah on 20th and 21st of October to answer the question under 313.  But her examination could not be completed due to paucity of time.

Special Judge Mallikarjunaiah in his order on 21st October had observed that....

“I tried the level best to conclude the statement of accused No., 1 within two days i.e. on 20.10.2011 in case for any reason, it is not concluded on the same day then to conclude on 21.10.2011…. Looking into the scope and importance of the provision under section 313 CR.P.C and the incriminating materials available in the deposition of witnesses and Exhibits, I have formulated totally 1339 questions to be put to the accused. Inspite of my best efforts due to large number of question it has not possible to conclude within he said period of two days….. Learned Special Public Prosecutor submitted that there is no embargo or legal impediment to take the proceedings on day to day basis therefore this case may be posted to tomorrow…. Considering the facts and circumstances. I am of the opinion that it is better to adjourn the case by granting time till 08.11.2011.”

Despite this categorical assertion by the Judge, Jayalalitha chose to approach the Apex court…citing reasons like  there was inconvenience to the public due to her appearance in Bengaluru and over 1500 police men were deployed and prohibitory orders under Section 144 was clamped.   She offered to answer the questions in writing instead of personal appearance.

But her arguments did not convince the Division Bench of the Supreme Court comprising Judges Dalveer Bandari and Deepak Misra and her petition was dismissed...and yet again it was Diwali for Sun and Kalinjar TV.  They also made an observation that grant of any exemption would set a wrong precedence.  The bench observed, “It would tantamount to grant you privilege if we exempt you from appearance.  We cannot set a wrong precedence.”

But the Bench also directed the Special Court to fix another date other than 8th November and suggested to complete the questioning in a day or two.

By again moving the Supreme Court for exemption, Jayalalitha continues to antagonize the trial judge, which is not a good sign say lawyers who have been following the trial closely and people who are in the know of things.

TN Cabinet reshuffle : Jaya's SIXER!!!

As reported in Whispers, the much awaited cabinet reshuffle has finally taken place and while 6 ministers have been dropped and 6 new faces have been inducted in Amma’s cabinet. 

The dropped names are C.Shanmugavelu, Rural Industries, Udhayakumar, Information Tecnology, SP.Shanmuganathan, HR & CE, NR.Sivapathy, Animal Husbandry, G.Senthamilan, Law and Buddhichandran, Food.

C Shanmugavelu who was handling Rural Industries including cottage and Small industries has been dropped because of lack of performance and because of the poor show in the local body elections.

S P Shanmuganathan who was handling Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments has been dropped due to lack of performance.

N R Sivapathy who was handling the Animal Husbandry, Milk and Dairy Development has been dropped because of AIADMK’s dismal show in the recently concluded local body elections…

Buddhichandaran who was handling civil Supplies, Consumer Protection and Price Control has been dropped because of lack of performance and also after allegations that he was favoring a group of people belonging to “Badaga” community in Nilgiris district and is being completely biased. Since Nilgiris district is DMK’s bastion…Jayalilathaa expects that a Minster from that region will strengthen her party’s base…But AIADMK insiders say that Buddhichandaran, had his own agenda to make hay while the sun shines. Whispers in the corridors of Fort St George is intelligence team that was monitoring the activities of this former AIADMK Minister had sent a detailed report to the Chief Minister in this regard…following which Buddhichandaran was shown the door. 

Udhaykumar who was heading the Information Technology portfolio…seems to have annoyed Amma with is over dose of “Bakti” (Devotion) and almost incurable foot-in-mouth disease. His “Bakti” towards Amma made him attend without any footwear to the Secretariat. Infact, being an IT Minister RB Udhayakumar has been walking around barefoot…even when meeting officials and top industrialists in this condition. His argument was “Amma  is God to me. She is God to all AIADMK men. Wherever Amma is present, the place is a temple for me…So I do not put on footwear at the secretariat.” Chief Minister Jayalilathaa who was completely annoyed with this drama ordered him to put on his footwear. Despite a warning the Minister was roaming around the corridors of power bare foot. Also Whispers doing rounds is that he was in talking terms with former DMK Minister K K S S R… K K S S Ramachandaran, was an MGR loyalist defected to the DMK. Sources say an intelligence report was sent in this regard and also it was difficult for the officials working along with him… as R B U was weak in his subject. Well being a “tube light” or putting up “tube lights” for Amma seems to have annoyed her further.

G Senthamizhan who was handling some of the key portfolios like Information and Publicity, Law department, Courts and Prisons has been shown the door by Amma. The speculation doing rounds is that he has been dropped because recently he made phone calls to police officers to release AIADMK party men who were arrested…Infact, after the phone call he himself landed in a police station to mount pressure on the police to release them. But Whispers doing rounds in the AIADMK circles is that he was dropped because of his bitter rivalry with T Nagar MLA V P Kalairajan. 

The turf war between V P Kalairajan and Senthamizhan is out in the open and all time high...and Kalairajan constantly kept lodging complaints against Senthamizhan with Poes Garden. V P Kalairajan has the dubious distinction of being bossy. Earlier, he ensured that Jaya’s class mate Bader Syeed and Actor S V Shekar were sidelined in the party by Amma as they did not adjust with him. Also AIADMK insiders say Amma is applying “one-man-one-post” formula as Senthamizhan, is also the South Chennai District Secretary. Whispers doing rounds in the intelligence circles is that Senthamizhan was in talking terms with Former City Mayor Ma Suburamaniam…despite a warning from Poes Garden he continued his relationship… so that has cost him dearly. Sources close to Senthamizhan say that he was hopeful that Amma will be re-designating him with better portfolio.   

The new faces inducted are S.Damodaran, R.Kamaraj, Dr.S.Sundararaj, M.Paranjothy, V.Moorthy and KT.Rajendhra Balaji. Whispers doing rounds is that… By and large all these new faces have been given cabinet berths after hectic lobbying with different power centers in the AIADMK. Whispers doing rounds is that M Ramachandran,Midas Mohan,Ravanan relatives and aides of Sasikala were approached by many AIADMK MLA's and some of these newly appointed Minister's were seen tagging along with  these power centers and also Looks like Caste and Regional balance was priority for Amma.

Sources also say based on the intelligence inputs Jayalalitha wanted to drop or atleast shif the port folios of Dr.Vijay, Velusamy, Agri Krishnamurthy and Natham Vishwanathan.  But Sasikala was firm that none of the four should be dropped…

There were also disappointments in the latest Cabinet re-shuffle…

Agriculture Minister K.A. Sengottaiyan, 3rd in command, seems to be very disappointed…as  Information Technology has been allocated for him. A portfolio that was handled Kanimozhi’s loyalist Poongothai Aladi Aruna during the DMK regime. Usually these Portfolios are handled by Junior Ministers. Since K A Sengottaiyan ranked third in the order of Ministers he was expecting that PWD portfolio will be allotted to him... but to the surprise of many it’s was a huge climb down.
Valarmathi, she has been trying very hard to get into the Cabinet…Sources in the AIADMK say Valarmathi was very confident until the final list was out. Whispers in Poes Garden is that Jaya is not willing to take any chances by inducting her.
V P Kalairajan, as we reported he went an extra mile to impress Amma…and Kalairajan was sure that he is into the Cabinet…But looks like Amma was not impressed by his gimmicks… as there has been equal number of complaints against him lodged by Senthamizhan’s camp. 
The others who were trying hard are now bracing themselves for the next round of lobbying…and those who have been dropped have just one thing to say “There is nothing permanent except change.” But the Tamil Nadu Government's website is yet to reflect these "changes".