Jayalalitha’s photograph presides party over meeting in her absence

jayalalithaCHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu cabinet met on Wednesday under the leadership of finance minister O Panneerselvam in the absence of chief minister J Jayalalithaa who has been undergoing treatment at Apollo Hospitals here.

The meeting of the 32-member cabinet (excluding the chief minister) lasted one hour. “The meeting started at 9.30am and ended at 10.30am. Panneerselvam with a big picture of Jayalalithaa in front of him chaired the meeting,” said a secretariat official. Panneerselvam is holding the portfolios of the chief minister.

The Cauvery issue is said to have figured prominently in the cabinet meeting. It also discussed appointment of special officers in local bodies as the term of councillors and mayors ends on October 24. “It is likely that an ordinance will be promulgated on appointment of special officers in a few days,” the official said.

The meeting discussed land allotment to investors who signed memoranda of understanding with the government during the Global Investors Meet in September last year.

This was the third meeting of the cabinet after AIADMK won the assembly elections in May. The first cabinet meeting was held under Jayalalithaa on May 23 soon after the swearing-in ceremony. Another meeting was held in July ahead of the state budget.

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