Former Tamil Nadu finance minister O Panneerselvam was sworn in as the chief minister at the Raj Bhavan early on Tuesday morning hours after Chennai’s Apollo Hospital announced AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa’s death.
AIADMK MLAs unanimously elected O Panneerselvam as the new legislative party leader.
Earlier in the night, state assembly speaker P Dhanpal called on the governor Vidyasagar Rao at Raj Bhavan.
Pannerselvam was the acting CM twice before when Jayalalithaa was disqualified to be the chief minister.
From humble beginnings as a tea stall owner in the 1980s, he ended up as the trusted loyalist of Jayalalithaa and became the chief minister himself. A man who kept a very low profile when pitchforked as the chief minister, Panneerselvam did not even enter the room of the chief minister and instead functioned from his own room.
Now 64, Panneerselvam had served as the chief minister in two spells from 2001 to 2002 and again from 2014 to 2015. When Jayalalithaa was hospitalised in September, Panneerselvam was handed over all the portfolios handled by Jayalalithaa.
Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa passed away on Monday night after a 74-day battle for life at the Apollo Hospital in Chennai.