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Jayalalithaa stakes claim to form government in Tamil Nadu

CHENNAI: AIADMK leader J Jayalalithaa on Friday called upon Tamil Nadu governor K Rosaiah and staked claim to form a government in the state. Earlier Jayalalithaa was reelected legislative party leader with reports saying that she will be returning as Chief Minister by Saturday following her acquittal in a disproportionate assets case.

Party MLAs, including chief minister O Panneerselvam, assembled at the party headquarters in Chennai and reelected Jayalalithaa as AIADMK legislative chief. The chief minister forwarded the motion to elect her as legislature party leader which was seconded by electricity minister Natham R Vishwanathan.

After accepting the resignation of Panneerselvam and his council of ministers, Tamil Nadu governor K Rosaiah invited AIADMK general secretary Jayalalithaa to form the new government.

Rosaiah requested the chief minister (Panneerselvam) and his present council of ministers to function until alternative arrangements are made.

Jayalalithaa will appear in public for the first time after her acquittal and garland the statues of AIADMK leaders, including party founder and mentor MG Ramachandran, DK leader Periyar EV Ramasamy and DMK founder CN Annadurai.

Clearing the way for Jayalalithaa to contest from an assembly constituency once she assumes office as chief minister for the fifth time, AIADMK MLA from north Chennai's Radhakrishnan Nagar, P Vetrivel, resigned on 17th May.

With Vetrivel's resignation, the AIADMK's strength in the 234-member assembly came down by one to 150, excluding the speaker.

Jayalalithaa had to resign as the chief minister after her conviction in the Rs 66.66 crore disproportionate assets case by a Bengaluru trial court in the disproportionate assets case on 27th Sept, 2014. However, on 11th May 2015, the Karnataka high court upturned the trial court conviction and cleared Jayalalithaa of all charges in the graft case.