Singing her praise,and reciting too
The MLA hostel in Chennai was buzzing until the last day of the just-concluded Assembly session. Inside the rooms,with their family members and supporters as audience,the AIADMKs MLAs were rehearsing for a performance in honour of their leader,Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa. Some chose popular songs from party founder MGRs films,others went for rhyming lines in Jayalalithaas praise while the courageous came up with poetry. Outside the House,at a party function before he presented his budget,Finance Minister O Panneerselvam went horizontal at her feet. Inside the House,the prostrations were limited to the verbal kind. In a state where politics is heavily influenced by cinema,party politics is a dance-drama in which everyone wants a role.
an era begins and ends
Ahead of the elections last year,the state government,prodded by the Election Commission,had appointed three officials known for their integrity to look after Madurai,which had acquired a reputation for money power dictating its elections. U Sagayam was made district collector,P Kannappan city police commissioner and Asra Garg superintendent of police for the district. This period has proved short-lived. First,commissioner Kannappan sought and got a transfer to Chennai citing personal reasons. Last week,Sagayam was transferred as MD of Cooptex,while Garg was posted as SP of Tiruppur. It is understood that the ruling party did not find it in its interest to have the team in place any longer now that the regime has changed.
Smooth ride on E-way 110
While many have expressed concerns about the quality of discussions and debates inside both Houses of Parliament,the issue in Tamil Nadu is a provision that pre-empts debate. Rule 110 of the Assembly ensures an unobstructed expressway of sorts for conducting business. According to the rules,there will be no debate on any statement made by a minister under Rule 110 on a matter of public importance. The present government made budgetary announcements of most departments under the rule DMK president M Karunanidhi counted as many as 39 announcements leaving no space for discussion.
A ministers qualifications
it minister Mukku N Subramanian is facing allegations that he claimed to be a graduate when he is not one. The Assembly website describes Subramanians educational qualification as graduate (BA),while the allegation is that he is yet to clear that examination. DMK president M Karunanidhi has quoted reports appearing in the vernacular media to say that Subramanian had not cleared even a single paper when he appeared for the first year BA examination in 2009,while he failed to appear for the second and third year papers. The last is yet to be heard on this.