Tamil Nadu governor calls officials to discuss law and order

Chennai: Tamil Nadu Governor K.Rosaiah Saturday summoned senior state government officials to discuss ways and means to maintain law and order and also the next steps in the wake of Chief Minister J.Jayalalithaa being held guilty in a disproportionate assets case.

Violence erupted in several parts of the state with AIADMK cadres indulging in stone pelting, arson and forcing shops to down their shutters as news spread that a special court in Bangalore had held Jayalalithaa guilty of amassing assets disproportionate to her known sources of income and sentenced her to four years imprisonment and fined her Rs.100 crore.

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Following the judgment, Jayalalithaa loses her position and also gets disqualified as the member of Tamil Nadu legislative assembly. A new chief minister has to be elected by the AIADMK legislators within two days.

A government bus was torched and several others were damaged in stone throwing, while there were at least three attempts at self-immolation by supporters of Jayalalithaa within hours of the court vedict.

What started as a sporadic violence in some parts of the state started spreading to other parts as AIADMK cadres stopped rail traffic and also threatened other road users. They also burnt effigies of opposition leaders.

The AIADMK partymen also stoned Bharatiya Janata Party leader Subramanian Swamy’s house here. The party cadres had assembled outside Jayalalithaa’s residence in the morning to see her off to Bangalore. They were also ready to welcome her with garlands and sweets hoping that the court verdict will be in her favour.

While a pall of gloom has descended over Jayalalithaa’s residence in Poes Garden, the mood was upbeat at DMK president M.Karunanidhi’s residence, just a kilometer away. Police beefed up security outside the residences of Karunanidhi, his son M.K. Stalin and senior leader K. Anbazhagan.

As soon as the court decision came, AIADMK cadres started stoning buses and forced shopkeepers to down their shutters in Kanchipuram, Trichy, Madurai and other places in the state.

In some places, policemen pacified the AIADMK cadres who were trying to force shop owners to pull down their shutters.

Some private companies decided to close early in the evening and theatres cancelled their evening shows in Chennai.