CHENNAI: The uncertainty regarding the exact state of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalitha’s health is increasing; voices are asking for who is running the state in her absence? The state Governor enquired about the working of the government with the Chief Executive of the state hospitalized.

With no second-rung leader in the AIADMK the question of who is going to handle the mantle of the party in Jayalalithaa’s absence has acquired new urgency. Jayalalitha had ensured that her reign remained supreme and had crushed any dissenting voice. This had made it impossible for any other leader to even project him or her as an alternative, even in situations like the present one.

Meanwhile, on Friday, the Governor has met the state’s Chief Secretary and two senior ministers, O Panneerselvam and E K Palanisamy. Mr. Panneerselvam had substituted for Ms. Jayalalitha when she was arrested on corruption charges in 2014. She was acquitted nine months later.

 

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These are trying times for the state which is embroiled in a bitter water dispute with the neighboring state, Karnataka. An expert team from Centre is to visit the state to try to find a solution for the vexed Kaveri water dispute with Karnataka. The absence of the Chief Minister will be considered as a significant disadvantage for Tamil Nadu.

Doctors attending on the 68-year-old CM said that she is on respiratory support and is likely to remain for a considerable long time at Apollo Hospital. Two days ago, a team of doctors from AIIMS joined a specialist from the UK to monitor the health of the ailing leader.