Jayalalithaa’s Home Can Be Converted Into CM Residence, Office: HC

The Madras High Court on Wednesday, 27 May, asked the Tamil Nadu government to reconsider its decision on converting residence of former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa into a memorial.

The court suggested that the building be converted into an official residence-cum-office for the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and a portion of it be converted into a memorial.

The court declared that the leader’s nephew J Deepak and niece J Deepa as Class II legal heirs entitled to inherit all properties left behind by her. Consequently, the state government cannot acquire her property without their consent.

The court also observed that Deepa and Deepak are legal heirs.

On 22 May, Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit gave his consent to the ordinance for the state government to ‘temporarily’ take over Veda Nilayam at Poes Garden in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, and to convert the house into a memorial.

He had permitted the ‘Puratchi Thalaivi Dr J Jayalalithaa Memorial Foundation’ to make long-term arrangements for the conversion process.

The trust will be headed by Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami, Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam, Information and Publicity Minister Kadambur Raju, and government officials including members and director of information and public relations.

Also Read: The Many Moods of Jayalalithaa

“The foundation will take necessary steps to maintain 'Veda Nilayam' and take necessary steps for the maintenance, upkeep and safety of all movable properties therein,” read a statement on Friday.

Veda Nilayam has been the centre of a political controversy after the AIADMK split in 2017 with O Panneerselvam’s rebellion against the then interim general secretary of the party VK Sasikala. In February 2017, Panneerselvam was the first to demand that the bungalow be converted into a memorial for the late leader.

After the merger of the Palaniswami and Panneerselvam factions, the former made an announcement on 17 August 2017 that the bungalow will be converted into a memorial. The government is constructing another memorial for Jayalalithaa on Marina beach where she was buried.

The value of the bungalow is estimated to be Rs 100 crore. Jayalalithaa resided at the house until the very end.

Also Read: Amma Ballad – The Story of Jayalalithaa, Tamil Folk Style

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