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Who will enter Jaya’s shoes?

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Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J jayalalithaa and Tamil Nadu Finance Minister O Panneerselvam at Tamil Nadu Secretariat (File)
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J jayalalithaa and Tamil Nadu Finance Minister O Panneerselvam at Tamil Nadu Secretariat before presenting the state budget for 2014-15 in Chennai on Feb.13, 2014. (Photo: IANS)
jayalalithaa with Panneerselvam at Tamil Nadu Secretariat before presenting the state budget.

Who will be the next chief minister of Tamil Nadu?  Tea-stall owner turned finance minister O. Panneerselvam is among the top contenders for the post. He was placed in a similar crisis situation in September 2001 when Jayalalithaa chose him to replace her after the Supreme Court declared her appointment as “not legal and valid”. The loyal lieutenant even won’t wear shoes in the presence of Amma! Like most of her loyal supporters Amma is almost like a deity!

Panneerselvam was CM for six months  till she returned in March 2012.

Political circles are talking about Jaya’s advisor Sheela Balakrishnan also. Another top contender is Dr. Visalakshi Nedunchezhian, the widow of former finance minister V.R. Nedunchezhian. Former state advocate-general A. Navaneethakrishnan is also in the running. Edappadi K. Palanisamy,  is the latest name doing the rounds. Number five in the present cabinet, he is the Minister for Highways and Minor Ports.

J jayalalithaa with O Panneerselvam
J jayalalithaa with O Panneerselvam