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Death toll in Tamil Nadu due to cyclone Gaja rises to 33

The death toll due to cyclone Gaja, which hit Tamil Nadu's coastal districts on Friday, has increased to 33, Chief Minister K. Palaniswami said on Saturday.

 
Coast Guard conducts aerial survey of Cyclone Gaja affected areas
The death toll due to cyclone Gaja, which hit Tamil Nadu's coastal districts on Friday, has increased to 33, Chief Minister K. Palaniswami said on Saturday.
 
Speaking to reporters at Salem, about 350 kilometres from here, Palaniswami said that 20 men, 11 women, and 2 children died due to the cyclone that crossed the Tamil Nadu coast between Nagapattinam and Vedaranyam districts between 12.30 a.m. and 2.30 a.m. on Friday.
 
The cyclone left a trail of destruction in Nagapattinam, Thanjavur, Thiruvarur, Cuddalore, Pudukkottai and Ramanathapuram districts, damaging houses, huts and crops.
 
Palaniswami said about 70 livestock and several goats, poultry and deer have also died due to the cyclone.
 
Some 127,000 trees were uprooted by the strong cyclonic winds that touched a maximum speed of about 120 kmph, the Chief Minister added.
 
He said supplies of water, milk and food were being distributed to the people affected by the calamity.
 
About 177,500 people are staying in 351 relief camps in the cyclone-affected areas.
 
The Chief Minister said about 30,000 electricity poles were broken, and 105 power sub-stations affected. About 10,000 personnel have been sent to the cyclone-affected coastal districts to repair the installations.
 
Meanwhile, actor Rajinikanth appreciated the members of his Rajini Makkal Mandram for their work in providing relief to the cyclone-affected people.
 
IANS
 

(Our News Desk can be contacted at desk@netindian.in)

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OPS gets boost as more AIADMK bigwigs back him in power tussle with Sasikala

Tamil Nadu caretaker Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam received a major boost in his open power tussle with ruling AIADMK General Secretary V. K. Sasikala when one of her key supporters and State Minister K. Pandiarajan and party spokesman and former Minister C. Ponnaiyan crossed over into his camp on Saturday.

 
TN Education Minister Pandiarajan backs OPS
Tamil Nadu caretaker Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam received a major boost in his open power tussle with ruling AIADMK General Secretary V. K. Sasikala when one of her key supporters and State Minister K. Pandiarajan and party spokesman and former Minister C. Ponnaiyan crossed over into his camp today.
 
As Ms. Sasikala moved quickly to keep her flock together amidst reports of growing desertions, three Lok Sabha members, V. Sathyabama of Tiruppur, Ashok Kumar of Krishnagiri and P R Sundaram of Namakkal also threw in their lot with Mr. Panneerselvam today.
 
Ms. Sasikala, on the other hand, voicing concern over the delay by Tamil Nadu Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao in responding to her claim to form the next Government in the state, wrote to him again today, seeking an opportunity to parade before him the MLAs supporting her.
 
Mr. Pandiarajan, the state Minister for School Education and Sports and Youth Welfare, arrived at Mr. Panneerselvam's residence, bringing cheer to the large crowd camping there and which has seen its support base growing slowly in the past few days.
 
The decision of Mr. Pandiarajan, one of the founders of well-known recruitment and consultancy firm Ma Foi, to switch loyalties is significant, given the fact that he was one of Ms. Sasikala's most ardent supporters during the past several days of political crisis in the state.
 
An indication of his impending shift was available from a "tweet" he posted on micro-blogging site Twitter this morning.
 
"Will surely listen to the collective voice of my voters & decide in a way to uphold the dignity of Amma's memory & unity of AIADMK!" he said.
 
Mr. Ponnaiyan said Mr. Panneerselvam was capable of leading the party with discipline and of running a corruption-free government.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam's Twitter handle said that state Rural Industries Minister P. Benjamin would shortly visit him to extend his support to him.
 
In her letter to the Governor, Ms. Sasikala noted that she had written to him on February 5 and February 7, seeking an appointment with him.
 
The Governor met her and nine Tamil Nadu Ministers in the evening of February 9 when she formally informed him of her election as the leader of the AIADMK legislature party last Sunday.
 
O. Panneerselvam
O. Panneerselvam
"... I submitted my elaborate presentation to invite me to form the Government as I have absolute majority. Original letter and true copy of the resolution were also handed over to Your Excellency," she said.
 
"Thus, as it has been seven long days since the Chief Minister Thiru. O. P. Panneerselvam submitted and Your Excellency accepted his resignation, taking the urgency of the situation at hand, I would like to seek an appointment with Your Excellency by today along with all MLAs who extended their support to me regarding further course of action to form the Government," she said.
 
"I believe Your Excellency will act immediately to save the sovereignty of the Constitution, democracy and the interest of the state," she added.
 
Ms. Sasikala addressed her supporters outside Veda Nilayam, the Poes Garden residence of the late Ms. Jayalalithaa, and said, "Amma has given me 1.5 crore party brothers and sisters.When they are with me,the sinister intentions of many will not  harm me."
 
"Amma is confident that I will look after AIADMK with all care," she said.
 
She said the relentless work done by Ms. Jayalalithaa had made AIADMK the third largest party. "Amma is with us now. Our Amma is now showing us the betrayers of our party," she said.
 
"People who think they can separate our party which has 1.5 crore people will only face defeat. Amma won over the hurdles, we are facing the same situation,we will also win over it. I believe in justice and democracy," she added.
Later, Ms. Sasikala drove in a motorcade to the resort where about 120 AIADMK MLAs have been staying for the past few days and met them for discussions on their future course of action.
 
"After meeting the party MLAs, I feel happy," she said. "All the party MLAs are fine and happy."
 
She said the "created time lag", in inviting her to form the government, appeared to be intended to create a split in the party.
 
Ms. Sasikala said she and her supporters were "waiting patiently" till now for a response to their claim, adding that "necessary measures will be taken".
 
Mr. K. A. Sengottayan, who has been appointed as the new chairman of the AIADMK Presidium, told journalists at the resort that all the MLAs there would remain with Ms. Sasikala till the end. "Our only aim is to make her the Chief Minister," he said.
 
However, there has been no indication whatsoever from Raj Bhavan in the past few days on when and how the political stalemate would be ended.
 
Even as the two rival groups continued to swipe and snipe at each other, Raj Bhavan clarified yesterday that the Governor had not sent any report to the President or the Ministry of Home Affairs on the political situation in the state.
 
The clarification came after media reports which said that Mr. Rao, who is the Governor of Maharashtra and is holding additional charge as the Governor of Tamil Nadu, had sent a report to the Centre after his meetings with Mr. Panneerselvam and Ms. Sasikala.
 
"Thiru Ch. Vidyasagar Rao, Governor of Tamil Nadu has not sent any report either to the Ministry of Home Affairs or to the President of India, as reported in some of the media," a statement from Raj Bhavan said.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam, 65, had submitted his resignation last Sunday after Ms. Sasikala, 60, a long-time aide of late Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa, was chosen by AIADMK MLAs as the new leader of their legislative party and, therefore, his successor. The Governor accepted his resignation on Monday and asked him to continue in office till alternative arrangments were made. 
 
Mr. Panneerselvam had been sworn in as the Chief Minister in the early hours of December 6, 2016 shortly after the death of Ms. Jayalalithaa, who was both the head of the government and the party supremo.
 
The usually reticent and self-effacing Mr. Panneerselvam made a surprise visit to the memorial of Ms. Jayalalithaa late in the night last Tuesday and then told waiting newspersons that he had been forced to resign and that he was willing to continue as Chief Minister if the people and the party so wished.
 
Ms. Sasikala was widely expected to be sworn in on Tuesday, but the Governor has not yet taken a final view on the situation confronting the state. Mr. Rao, who reached here from Mumbai on Thursday afternoon, met ten-member delegations led by the rivals, Mr. Panneerselvam and Ms. Sasikala, later that day.
 
While Mr. Panneerselvam told the Governor that he was forced to quit as Chief Minister and that he should be allowed to continue and take a floor test in the Assembly, Ms. Sasikala submitted to Mr. Rao a list of about 130 of the AIADMK's 135 MLAs and staked claim to forming the next Government.
 
The Governor is understood to be consulting legal and Constitutional experts and weighing his options.
 
Yesterday, Mr. Rao met State Chief Secretary Girija Vaidyanathan and Director General of Police T. K. Rajendran as well as Chennai Police Commissioner S. George amidst complaints by the Panneerselvam camp that the Sasikala group was holding about 120 MLAs at a nearby resort, many of them against their will.
 
V. K. Sasikala
V. K. Sasikala
DMK working president and leader of the Opposition M. K. Stalin met Mr Rao yesterday and submitted a representation in which he said the state administration could not be allowed to drift any further. He urged the Governor to take steps to ensure that a democratically and Constitutionally valid government was in place at the earliest through a free and fair floor test.
 
Meanwhile, Ms. Sasikala yesterday expelled AIADMK presidium chairman E. Madhusudanan from the primary membership of the party, a day after he threw in his lot with Mr. Panneerselvam. Mr. K. A. Sengottayan has been appointed as the new chairman of the presidium.
 
Mr. Madhusudanan, on his part, wrote to the Election Commission stating that Ms. Sasikala's election as General Secretary of the party was in violation of its rules and urging it to reject her claims in this regard.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam had said on Thursday that he would issue orders to convert Veda Nilayam, the Poes Garden residence of late Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa, into a memorial for her. The announcement assumes significance in view of the fact that Ms. Sasikala is functioning from that house.
 
To take this a step further, his camp has launched a signature campaign outside his residence on the proposal.
 
Two days after Ms. Sasikala removed him from the post of AIADMK treasurer, Mr. Panneerselvam on Thursday also wrote to banks asking them to not allow any one to access the party funds without his written permission. He said his removal from the post of treasurer was illegal.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam has been always regarded as a trusted lieutenant of Ms. Jayalalithaa and had stood in for her as Chief Minister twice when she faced crises.
 
Among those who have openly come out to support Mr. Panneerselvam is AIADMK Rajya Sabha member V. Maitreyan and former Tamil Nadu Assembly speaker P. H. Pandian.
 
There has been opposition to Ms. Sasikala's elevation from a section of the public, in social media and from the Opposition in the state. They point to the fact that she has never contested any election and has no administrative experience. They also point to the fact that an appeal against her acquittal in a two-decade-old corruption case is pending before the Supreme Court and its verdict could be delivered as early as next week.
 
Ms. Sasikala and two others were co-accused with Ms. Jayalalithaa in the case, in which they were all acquitted by the Karnataka High Court in May 2015. The two others are her nephew Sudhakaran, who is Ms. Jayalalithaa's disowned foster son, and her close relative Ilavarasi.
 
The Karnataka High Court had allowed Ms. Jayalalithaa's appeal against the verdict of a special court in Bangalore which had, on September 23, 2014, sentenced her to four years in prison and asked her to pay a fine of Rs 100 crore. The special court had sentenced Ms. Sasikala, Sudharakan and Ilavarasi  also to four years in prison and fined them Rs 10 crore each.
 
Ms. Jayalalithaa was admitted to the Apollo Hospital here on September 22 and died on December 5 after a sudden cardiac arrest. Doctors who treated her had told a press conference here on Monday that the AIADMK leader had been treated for septicemia and a host of other medical problems.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam was Finance Minister in Ms. Jayalalithaa's Cabinet and was also handling all the portfolios held by her after she was hospitalised on September 22.
 
He had stood in as Chief Minister for Ms. Jayalalithaa twice in the past. On September 29, 2014, he took over the position when Ms. Jayalalithaa resigned after being sentenced to four years in prison by a special court in Bangalore in a corruption case. Ms. Jayalalithaa returned to office on May 23, 2015, twelve days after the Karnataka High Court acquitted her in the 19-year-old corruption case.
 
He had earlier served as Chief Minister for a brief period from September 21, 2001 to March 1, 2002 after the Supreme Court had declared null and void the action of then Governor Fatima Beevi appointing Ms Jayalalithaa to the position as she had been sentenced to two years rigorous imprisonment in another corruption case. Ms Jayalalithaa was cleared of all charges in 2002 and returned as Chief Minister.
 
Ms. Sasikala's control over the party was in evidence in the manner in which she carried out Ms. Jayalalithaa's last rites and then took hold of the reins of the AIADMK a few days later. Since then, there has been a clamour from a group within the AIADMK that, after being chosen as the new General Secretary, she should also take charge of the Government. Ms. Jayalalithaa held both the posts and they argued that it was better if the same person held both positions.
 
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Panneerselvam's resignation accepted, Sasikala likely to be sworn in on Tuesday

Tamil Nadu Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao on Monday accepted the resignation of Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam and his Council of Ministers and his successor, Ms. V. K. Sasikala, a long-time aide of late AIADMK supremo J. Jayalalithaa, is expected to be sworn in on Tuesday.

V. K. Sasikala
V. K. Sasikala
Tamil Nadu Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao today accepted the resignation of Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam and his Council of Ministers and his successor, Ms. V. K. Sasikala, a long-time aide of late AIADMK supremo J. Jayalalithaa, is expected to be sworn in tomorrow.
 
The Governor requested Mr. Panneerselvam and his Council of Ministers to continue to function until alternate arrangements are made, a press release from the Raj Bhavan said.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam, 65, had resigned from office yesterday after the ruling All India Anna Dravid Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) legislature party met here and chose Ms. Sasikala as its new leader.
 
Ms. Sasikala, 60, is expected to be sworn in as the new Chief Minister of the State tomorrow morning at a function at the Madras University auditorium. 
 
Mr. Panneerselvam had been sworn in as the Chief Minister of the state in the early hours of December 6, succeeding Ms. Jayalalithaa who passed away at a private hospital here late night on December 5.
 
"Chinnamma elected as the AIADMK Legislature Party Leader," the AIADMK had said on micro-blogging site Twitter yesterday. Ms. Sasikala is referred to as "Chinamma" by party workers, just as Ms. Jayalalithaa was called "Amma".
 
It said Mr. Panneerselvam himself, known to be a long-time Jayalalithaa loyalist, had proposed Ms. Sasikala's name as the new leader of the AIADMK legislature party leader.
 
"Chinnamma all set to become the next Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu," the party said.
 
Ms. Sasikala had then made a brief appearance in the balcony of Ms. Jalayalalithaa's residence in Poes Garden here, dressed in a green saree and blouse, the AIADMK's colour, and greeted the crowds gathered outside with a "namaste" and then the "V" sign.
 
She later drove to the AIADMK headquarters where she said that it was Mr. Panneerselvam who had urged her first to take charge as General Secretary of the party and it was he who insisted, first, that she become the Chief Minister of the state. Ms. Sasikala has never held any position in Government before nor has she ever contested any elections.
 
She assured the people that her government would always work for the welfare of the people. "Tamil Nadu Government will follow the principles of Amma," she said.
  
Mr. Panneerselvam, 65, was Finance Minister in Ms. Jayalalithaa's Cabinet and was also handling all the portfolios held by her after she was admitted to the Apollo Hospital here on September 22.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam had stood in as Chief Minister for Ms. Jayalalithaa twice in the past. On September 29, 2014, he took over the position when Ms. Jayalalithaa resigned after being sentenced to four years in prison by a special court in Bangalore in a corruption case. Ms. Jayalalithaa returned to office on May 23, 2015, twelve days after the Karnataka High Court acquitted her in the 19-year-old corruption case.
 
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He had earlier served as Chief Minister for a brief period from September 21, 2001 to March 1, 2002 after the Supreme Court had declared null and void the action of then Governor Fatima Beevi appointing Ms Jayalalithaa to the position as she had been sentenced to two years rigorous imprisonment in another corruption case. Ms Jayalalithaa was cleared of all charges in 2002 and returned as Chief Minister.
 
Ms. Sasikala's control over the party was in evidence in the manner in which she carried out Ms. Jayalalithaa's last rites and then took hold of the reins of the AIADMK a few days later. Since then, there has been a clamour from a group within the AIADMK that, after being chosen as the new General Secretary, she should also take charge of the Government. Ms. Jayalalithaa held both the posts and they argued that it was better if the same person held both positions.
 
Ms. Sasikala, along with her nephew Sudhakaran, who is Ms. Jayalalithaa's disowned foster son, and her close relative Ilavarasi , were  co-accused with Ms. Jayalalithaa in an 18-year-old corruption case, in which they were all acquitted by the Karnataka High Court in May 2015. An appeal against the acquittal is pending before the Supreme Court and its verdict in the matter is awaited.
 
The Karnataka High Court had allowed Ms. Jayalalithaa's appeal against the verdict of a special court in Bangalore which had, on September 23, 2014, sentenced her to four years in prison and asked her to pay a fine of Rs 100 crore. The special court had sentenced Ms. Sasikala, Sudharakan and Ilavarasi  also to four years in prison and fined them Rs 10 crore each.
 
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Sasikala Natarajan set to be new CM of Tamil Nadu

All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) General Secretary Sasikala Natarajan, a long-time friend and companion of late party supremo J. Jayalithaa, is all set to become the new Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu after the party's MLAs met in Chennai and chose her as the leader of its legislature party.

 
Sasikala Natarajan appointed legislative party leader of AIADMK
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) General Secretary Sasikala Natarajan, a long-time friend and companion of late party supremo J. Jayalithaa, is all set to become the new Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu after the party's MLAs met here today and chose her as the leader of its legislative party.
 
She will succeed Mr. O. Panneerselvam, senior leader of the ruling AIADMK, who was sworn in as the Chief Minister of the state in the early hours of December 6, succeeding Ms. Jayalalithaa who passed away at a private hospital here late night on December 5.
 
"Chinnamma elected as the AIADMK Legislature Party Leader," the AIADMK said on micro-blogging site Twitter. 
 
Ms. Sasikala, 60, is referred to as "Chinamma" by party workers, just as Ms. Jayalalithaa was called as "Amma". It said Mr. Panneerselvam had proposed Ms. Sasikala's name as the new leader of the AIADMK legislature party leader.
 
"Chinnamma all set to become the next Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu," the party said.
 
Ms. Sasikala made a brief appearance in the balcony of Ms. Jalayalalithaa's residence in Poes Garden here, dressed in a green saree and blouse, the AIADMK's colour, and greeted the crowds gathered outside with a "namaste" and then the "V" sign.
 
Ms. Sasikala later drove to the AIADMK headquarters where she said that it was Mr. Panneerselvam who had urged her first to take charge as General Secretary of the party and it was he who insisted, first, that she become the Chief Minister of the state. Ms. Sasikala has never held any position in Government before nor has ever contested any elections.
 
She assured the people that her government would always work for the welfare of the people. "Tamil Nadu Government will follow the principles of Amma," she said.
 
She is expected to meet Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao in the next day or two and stake claim to form the next government in the state.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam, 65, was Finance Minister in Ms. Jayalalithaa's Cabinet and was also handling all the portfolios held by her after she was admitted to the Apollo Hospital here on September 22.
 
Mr. Panneerselvam had stood in as Chief Minister for Ms. Jayalalithaa twice in the past. On September 29, 2014, he took over the position when Ms. Jayalalithaa resigned after being sentenced to four years in prison by a special court in Bangalore in a corruption case. Ms. Jayalalithaa returned to office on May 23, 2015, twelve days after the Karnataka High Court acquitted her in the 19-year-old corruption case.
 
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He had earlier served as Chief Minister for a brief period from September 21, 2001 to March 1, 2002 after the Supreme Court had declared null and void the action of then Governor Fatima Beevi appointing Ms Jayalalithaa to the position as she had been sentenced to two years rigorous imprisonment in another corruption case. Ms Jayalalithaa was cleared of all charges in 2002 and returned as Chief Minister.
 
Ms. Sasikala's control over the party was in evidence in the manner in which she carried out Ms. Jayalalithaa's last rites and then took hold of the reins of the AIADMK a few days later. Since then, there has been a clamour from a group within the AIADMK that, after being chosen as the new General Secretary, she should also take charge of the Government. Ms. Jayalalithaa held both the posts and they argued that it was better if the same person held both positions.
 
Ms. Sasikala, along with her nephew Sudhakaran, who is Ms. Jayalalithaa's disowned foster son, and her close relative Ilavarasi , were  co-accused with Ms. Jayalalithaa in an 18-year-old corruption case, in which they were all acquitted by the Karnataka High Court in May 2015. An appeal against the acquittal is pending before the Supreme Court and its verdict in the matter is awaited.
 
The Karnataka High Court had allowed Ms. Jayalalithaa's appeal against the verdict of a special court in Bangalore which had, on September 23, 2014, sentenced her to four years in prison and asked her to pay a fine of Rs 100 crore. The special court had sentenced Ms. Sasikala, Sudharakan and Ilavarasi  also to four years in prison and fined them Rs 10 crore each.
 
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Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa suffers cardiac arrest in hospital

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa, who has been undergoing treatment at the Apollo Hospital in Chennai for the last three months for a lung infection, suffered a cardiac arrest on Sunday evening, the hospital said.

 
Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa suffers cardiac arrest
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa, who has been undergoing treatment at the Apollo Hospital here for the last three months for a lung infection, suffered a cardiac arrest this evening, the hospital said.
 
"The Hon'ble Chief Minister of Tamil Nau who is undergoing treatment at Apollo Hospitals, Greams Road, Chennai, suffered a cardiac arrest this evening," the hospital said in a statement late tonight.
 
"She is being treated and monitored by a team of experts, including Cardiologists, Pulmonologists and the Critical Care Specialists," the statement added.
 
The hospital said Ms. Jayalalithaa was on extracorporeal membrane heart assist device and was being treated by a team of expert doctors and critical care specialists.
 
The hospital said Dr Richard Beale from London had also been consulted and he had concurred with the line of treatment by its cardiologists and pulmonologists.
 
"Our prayers are with her and we hope she will recover soon. We request all of you to pray for her good health and well being. The Hon'ble CM is the beloved leader of the masses. Please join us in praying for her speedy recovery," the hospital said in a series of posts on micro-blogging site Twitter.
 
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to Tamil Nadu Governor Chennamaneni Vidyasagar Rao, to inquire about Ms. Jayalalithaa's heath.
 
Mr. Rao, who is the Governor of Maharashtra, is holding additional charge of Tamil Nadu, since August 31 following the end of the tenure of Mr. K. Rosaiah. He told Mr. Rajnath Singh that he would leave for Chennai tonight.
 
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Hundreds of workers of Ms. Jayalalithaa's party, the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), her supporters and leaders of the party began converging outside the hospital after hearing of the news of her cardiac arrest. Police stepped up security arrangements outside the hospital as a precautionary measure.
 
Earlier in the day, the AIADMK had said that Ms. Jayalalithaa would soon decide when she would leave hospital and return home after doctors had declared that she had fully recovered.
 
The hospital has said several times in the past few weeks that the Chief Minister, called "Amma" by her supporters, was well enough to return home whenever she wanted. Her party said she was involved in taking government decisions and also speaking on occasion to those who were allowed to meet her.
 
Ms. Jayalalithaa was admitted to the hospital on September 27 for treatment of dehydration and fever. Later, there were reports that she was also being treated for a chronic lung infection and that he had been put on respiratory support. Specialist doctors from London and Delhi had been flown in to monitor her condition.
 
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Jayalalithaa returns as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu

AIADMK supremo J Jayalalithaa was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu in Chennai on Saturday, 12 days after the Karnataka High Court acquitted her in an 19-year-old corruption case and paved the way for her return to the top job in the state for the fifth time after a gap of eight months.

 
Jayalalithaa sworn in as Tamil Nadu CM
 
 
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) supremo J Jayalalithaa was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu here today, 12 days after the Karnataka High Court acquitted her in an 19-year-old corruption case and paved the way for her return to the top job in the state for the fifth time after a gap of eight months.
 
Tamil Nadu Governor K Rosaiah administered the oaths of offie and secrecy to Ms Jayalalithaa at a ceremony at the Madras University Centenary Auditorium.
 
Along with Ms Jayalalithaa, 67, as many as 28 other Ministers were also sworn in, including Mr O. Panneerselvam, who had functioned as Chief Minister since September 29 after she had been forced to resign following her conviction by a special court in Bangalore in the case.
 
Mr Panneerselvam will be Finance Minister, a portfolio he had held in her previous Cabinet.
 
The Governor had accepted the resignation of Mr. Panneerselvam and his Council of Ministers with effect from the forenoon of yesterday and requested him and his Council of Ministers to function until alternative arrangements were made.
 
Later yesterday, Ms Jayalalithaa, who was elected as the leader of the AIADMK Legislature Party, had called on Mr Rosaiah and staked her claim to form the new government.
 
Ms Jayalalithaa will have to get elected to the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly within six months in keeping with Constitutional requirements.
 
Mr Panneerselvam had earlier served as Chief Minister for a brief period from September 21, 2001 to March 1, 2002 after the Supreme Court had declared null and void the action of then Governor Fatima Beevi appointing Ms Jayalalithaa to the position as she had been sentenced to two years rigorous imprisonment in another corruption case. Like this tim, she was then, too, cleared of all charges in 2002 and had returned as Chief Minister.
 
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On May 11, the Karnataka High Court allowed Ms Jayalalithaa's appeal against the verdict of the special court in Bangalore which had, on September 23, 2014, sentenced her to four years in prison and asked her to pay a fine of Rs 100 crore.
 
Mr Justice C R Kumaraswamy said the appeals by Ms Jayalalithaa and the three co-accused had been allowed and that they were acquitted of all charges.
 
Ms Jayalalithaa had also been barred by the special court from contesting elections and that verdict had meant that she had been disqualified as a member of the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly and ceased to be the Chief Minister of the state. The acquittal by the High Court meant that Ms Jayalalithaa could return as Chief Minister.
 
The three co-accused who were acquitted along with her are her close aide Sasikala Natarajan, Sasikala's nephew and Jayalalithaa's disowned foster son Sudhakaran and Sasikala's close relative Ilavarasi, who were also convicted in the case and sentenced to four years in prison and fined Rs 10 crore each by the special court.
 
Sasikala was among the more than 3000 people present at the ceremony. Others present included film stars Rajnikanth, Sarath Kumar and Prabhu and industrialists N Srinivasan and A C Muthaiah.
 
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Jayalalithaa acquitted in corruption case, paving way for her return as TN CM

Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa was on Monday acquitted by the Karnataka High Court in Bangalore in an 18-year-old corruption case, clearing the way for her return to the top job in her state.

File photo of J. Jayalalithaa.
File photo of J. Jayalalithaa.
Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa was today acquitted by the Karnataka High Court here in an 18-year-old corruption case, clearing the way for her return to the top job in her state.
 
The High Court allowed Ms Jayalalithaa's appeal against the verdict of a special court in Bangalore which had, on September 23, 2014, sentenced her to four years in prison and asked her to pay a fine of Rs 100 crore.
 
Reading out the operative part of the judgement at 11 am in the court, Mr Justice C R Kumaraswamy said the appeals by Ms Jayalalithaa and the three co-accused had been allowed and that they were acquitted of all charges.
 
Ms Jayalalithaa, 67, had also been barred by the special court from contesting elections and that verdict had meant that she had been disqualified as a member of the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly and ceased to be the Chief Minister of the state.
 
Today's acquittal means that Ms Jayalithaa, supremo of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), can return as Chief Minister.
 
After she had stepped down, senior AIADMK leader O. Panneerselvam was sworn in as the new Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu on September 29 last year.
 
Mr Panneerselvam, 63, had earlier served as Chief Minister for a brief period from September 21, 2001 to March 1, 2002 after the Supreme Court had declared null and void the action of then Governor Fatima Beevi appointing Ms Jayalalithaa to the position as she had been sentenced to two years rigorous imprisonment in another corruption case. She was later cleared of all charges in 2002 and had returned as Chief Minister.
 
Ms Jayalalithaa, a film star-turned-politician, and the three co-accused persons were accused by the prosecution of amassing assets valued at Rs 66.65 crore disproportionate to their known sources of income from 1991-96 during her first term in office.
 
The special court had sentenced the co-accused -- her close aide Sasikala Natarajan, Sasikala's nephew Sudharakan, who is Jayalalithaa's disowned foster son, and Sasikala's close relative Ilavarasi -- also to four years in prison and fined them Rs 10 crore each.
 
 
Jayalalithaa acquitted by Karnataka HC in corruption case
Celebrations broke out among Ms Jayalalithaa's supporters all across Tamil Nadu as well as outside the high court here, where they had gathered in large numbers.
 
Hundreds of people who had congregated outside her Poes Garden residence in Chennai since early morning burst firecrackers, danced and distributed sweets as soon as news of the verdict by Mr Justice C R Kumaraswamy ame in.
 
Mr Panneerselvam and many of his Cabinet colleagues also turned up to congratulate her.
 
On October 17 last year, Ms Jayalalithaa had been granted bail by the Supreme Court in the case after the Karnataka High Court had turned down her application.
 
Along with her, the apex court also granted bail to Ms Natarajan, Mr Sudhakaran and Mr Ilavarasi.
 
The case was filed in 1997 by the Tamil Nadu government's Department of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption (DVAC) during the tenure of Ms Jayalalithaa's rival and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) leader M Karunanidhi as Chief Minister.
 
The Supreme Court ordered the case to be transferred to a special court in Bangalore in 2003 on a petition filed by DMK leader K Anbazhagan, who had expressed doubts about a fair trial in Tamil Nadu after Jayalalithaa returned as Chief Minister.
 
The prosecution had alleged that Jayalalithaa had just Rs 3 crore when she took over as Chief Minister for the first time in 1991 and had taken a token salary of just Re 1, but her wealth and that of her three co-accused had grown to Rs 66.6 crore during her five years in office, vastly disproportionate to her known sources of income.
 
The alleged wealth included 2000 acres of land, 30 kg of gold and thousands of sarees. She was also accused of spending more than Rs 5 crore on her foster son's wedding in 1996, though she had claimed that the expenditure was borne by the bride's family.
 
Ms Jayalalithaa had all along maintained that the case was an act of political vendetta by the DMK. Among other things, she had agued that her previous assets were undervalued, her property was overvalued and her income from various sources were not taken into account.
 
In 2011, Jayalalithaa had appeared in the Bangalore court for four days to answer more than 1390 questions posed by the judge.
 
In the Lok Sabha elections last year, the AIADMK had made a near clean sweep in Tamil Nadu, winning 37 of the 39 seats from the state.
 
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SC grants bail to former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa

The Supreme Court on Friday granted bail to former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, who was convicted by a special court in Bangalore on September 27 in an 18-year-old corruption case and sentenced to four years in prison and asked to pay a fine of Rs 100 crore.

File photo of J. Jayalalithaa.
File photo of J. Jayalalithaa.
The Supreme Court today granted bail to former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, who were convicted by a special court in Bangalore on September 27 in an 18-year-old corruption case and sentenced to four years in prison and asked to pay a fine of Rs 100 crore.
 
Along with Ms Jayalalithaa, 66, the apex court also granted bail to her close aide Sasikala Natarajan, Sasikala's nephew and Jayalalithaa's disowned foster son Sudhakaran and Sasikala's close relative Ilavarasi, who were also convicted in the case and sentenced to four years in prison and fined Rs 10 crore each.
 
The Karnataka High Court had, on October 7, rejected Ms Jayalalithaa's bail application. While doing so, Judge A V Chandrashekhara recalled that the Supreme Court had made it clear in the past that corruption cases should be put on the fast track. He pointed out that the apex court had taken a tough stand in such cases and had described corruption as a "violation of human rights".
 
Ms Jayalalithaa and the three co-accused persons were accused by the prosecution of amassing assets valued at Rs 66.65 crore disproportionate to their known sources of income from 1991-96 during her first term in office.
 
The All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) supremo had moved the Supreme Court for bail on October 9.
 

 
Jayalalithaa granted interim bail by SC in DA case
The apex court today suspended her sentence and granted her bail after imposing some conditions, including that she would have to submit her paprs for the appeal against her conviction within two months, that is by December 18, and that she would not seek any adjournment of the hearings. 
 
As soon as news of the court's decision to grant her bail came, hundreds of supporters of Ms Jayalalithaa in Chennai and elsewhere broke out into rapturous celebrations.
 
Ms Jayalalithaa, who has been held in prison in Bangalore since September 27, is expected to be released on bail later today or tomorrow. She will remain confined to home in Chennai while she is on bail.
 
The court fixed December 18 as the date to satisfy itself if she had complied with its order.
 
Her counsel Fali Nariman assured the court on her behalf that there would be no act of lawlessness by her party's workers in Tamil Nadu. She had sought bail on the grounds that she was suffering from various ailments and that she was a senior citizen and a woman.
 
Ms Jayalalithaa stood disqualified as a member of the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly after her conviction and sentence and had to resign as Chief Minister. She is also barred from contesting elections for six years after she completes her four-year sentence.
 
The case was filed in 1997 by the Tamil Nadu government's Department of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption (DVAC) during the tenure of Jayalalithaa's rival and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) leader M Karunanidhi as Chief Minister.
 
The Supreme Court ordered the case to be transferred to a special court in Bangalore in 2003 on a petition filed by DMK leader K Anbazhagan, who had expressed doubts about a fair trial in Tamil Nadu after Jayalalithaa returned as Chief Minister.
 
The prosecution had alleged that Ms Jayalalithaa had just Rs 3 crore when she took over as Chief Minister for the first time in 1991 and had taken a token salary of just Re 1, but her wealth and that of her three co-accused had grown to Rs 66.6 crore during her five years in office, vastly disproportionate to her known sources of income.
 
The alleged wealth included 2000 acres of land, 30 kg of gold and thousands of sarees. She was also accused of spending more than Rs 5 crore on her foster son's wedding in 1996, though she had claimed that the expenditure was borne by the bride's family.
 
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The court held that the prosecution had been able to prove that she possessed disproportionate assets of about Rs 53 crore. 
 
Ms Jayalalithaa had all along maintained that the case was an act of political vendetta by the DMK. Among other things, she had agued that her previous assets were undervalued, her property was overvalued and her income from various sources were not taken into account.
 
In the Lok Sabha elections held earlier this year, the AIADMK had made a near clean sweep in Tamil Nadu, winning 37 of the 39 seats from the state and emerging as the third largest party in the House.
 
Elections to the Tamil Nadu Assembly are due in 2016 and unless her conviction is overturned by a higher court, Ms Jayalalithaa cannot contest them.
 
After Ms Jayalalithaa stepped down, senior AIADMK leader O. Panneerselvam was sworn in as the new Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu on September 29.
 
Mr Panneerselvam, 63, had earlier served as Chief Minister for a brief period from September 21, 2001 to March 1, 2002 after the Supreme Court had declared null and void the action of then Governor Fatima Beevi appointing Ms Jayalalithaa to the position as she had been sentenced to two years rigorous imprisonment in another corruption case.
 
Ms Jayalalithaa was later cleared of all charges in 2002 and had returned as Chief Minister.
 
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Madras High Court lifts ban on TikTok app

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The Madras High Court's Madurai Bench on Wednesday lifted the ban on video mobile application TikTok, owned by Chinese company ByteDance, subject to certain conditions.
 
Deciding the case filed by advocate Muthukumar, the bench vacated its interim order banning the app, subject to conditions that pornographic videos will not be uploaded on it, failing which contempt of court proceedings would begin.
 
Early this month, the high court, on a petition filed by the advocate, issued an interim order to the Central government banning downloading of the app in India and restricted the media from telecasting videos taken using the app.
 
The high court had passed an interim order banning the app citing inappropriate and pornographic content.
 
Tamil Nadu's Information Technology Minister M. Manikandan had earlier said that the state would write to the Central government seeking a ban on the app in India.
 
The high court had appointed leading lawyer Arvind Datar as an independent counsel to the court.
 
On an appeal filed by the Chinese company, the Supreme Court, on April 22, asked the Madras High Court to decide on TikTok's plea for an interim relief by April 24, failing which the ban imposed on the mobile app will stand lifted.
 
The apex court had refused to pass any order in the matter.
 
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EC seeks report on actor Srikanth voting

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The Election Commission has sought a report from the Chennai District Electoral Officer on how actor Srikanth was allowed to vote in the April 18 Lok Sabha polls when his name was not in the voter's list, said a senior official on Wednesday.
 
Speaking to reporters here, Tamil Nadu Chief Electoral Officer Satyabrata Sahoo said a report had been sought.
 
Similarly, the poll panel has found itself in a fix with another actor Sivakarthikeyan casting his vote in the Lok Sabha polls in a polling booth here when his name was not in the voter's list.
 
Sahoo said a report had been sought as to how the actors' names got deleted from the voter's list and also how they were allowed to vote.
 
He said action will be taken against the erring officials.
 
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Watson takes CSK to top of table with win over SRH

 
Shane Watson smashed a belligerent 96 as Chennai Super Kings (CSK) zoomed back to the top of the table with a commanding six-wicket victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad in an Indian Premier League (IPL) clash at the M. A. Chidambaram Stadium here on Tuesday.
 
Watson, who took 53 balls and hit nine fours and six sixes, missed out on a fifth IPL hundred as Bhuvneshwar Kumar (1/18) got his wicket.
 
But riding his devastating knock, CSK made light of a 176-run target after skipper M. S. Dhoni asked Sunrisers to bat first. CSK scored 176/4 in 19.5 overs.
 
For the visitors, Manish Pandey (83 off 49 balls, not out) and David Warner (57; 45 balls, 4x3, 6x2) struck half centuries.
 
CSK lost Faf du Plessis (1) early but that mattered little as Watson roared back to form on a day star spinner Rashid Khan (1/44) had an off-day.
 
The former Australia opener forged a 77-run stand for the second wicket with Suresh Raina (38) and then shared an 80-run stand with Ambati Rayudu (21) to guide his team to a win after two losses with one ball to spare.
 
Once Watson was out, caught behind trying to hook Sunrisers skipper Bhuvneshwar, the run-flow ebbed with CSK managing just seven runs off the last two overs hitting no boundaries.
 
In the last over, the defending champions needed nine. Kedar Jadhav (11 not out) hit Sandeep Sharma for a six despite Pandey's brilliant effort on the boundary to save it but then Rayudu was out with one run needed off two balls.
 
Dwayne Bravo (0 not out) came to crease but did not face a ball as Jadhav completed the formalities.
 
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Earlier, Pandey remained unbeaten on 83 with the help of seven fours and three sixes but could not lead his team to an imposing total as Sunrisers managed only 51 runs in the last six overs after Warner's dismissal. Sunrisers managed 175/3 in 20 overs.
 
Warner cracked his seventh fifty this season as the dashing southpaw combined with Pandey for a 115-run stand for the second wicket which formed the bedrock of Sunrisers' innings.
 
For CSK, Harbhajan Singh was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 2/39 in four overs.
 
The visitors lost Jonny Bairstow (0) -- playing his last IPL game -- early, as the England stumper-batsman was out caught behind trying to cut Harbhajan.
 
From there on, Warner and Pandey paced their innings perfectly as Sunrisers raced to 91/1 at the halfway stage.
 
Harbhajan removed Warner in the 14th over with a slower one which the veteran Australian failed to read and came down the track only for Dhoni to effect a brilliant stumping.
 
Vijay Shankar (26; 20b, 4x2, 6x1) then joined hands with Pandey for a 47-run partnership before holing out to Ravidra Jadeja at deep midwicket off Deepak Chahar.
 
Shankar never really got going and after he was removed, Yusuf Pathan (5 not out) also could not up the ante.
 
Brief scores - 
Sunrisers Hyderabad: 175/3 (Manish Pandey 83, not out; David Warner 57; Harbhajan Singh 2/39) vs Chennai Super Kings: 176/4 (Shane Watson 96; Bhuvneshwar Kumar 1/18)
 
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IPL: Pandey, Warner fifties help Sunrisers post 175/3 against CSK

 
Manish Pandey and David Warner struck half-centuries as Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) posted 175/3 in their 20 overs against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in an Indian Premier League (IPL) clash at the M. A. Chidambaram Stadium here on Tuesday.
 
Pandey remained unbeaten on 83 off 49 balls with the help of seven fours and three sixes but could not lead his team to an imposing total as Sunrisers managed only 51 runs in the last six overs after Warner's dismissal.
 
Warner (57; 45 balls, 4x3, 6x2) cracked his seventh fifty this season as the dashing southpaw combined with Pandey for a 115-run stand for the second wicket which formed the bedrock of Sunrisers' innings after CSK skipper M. S. Dhoni put them in to bat first.
 
For CSK, Harbhajan Singh was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 2/39 in four overs.
 
The visitors lost Jonny Bairstow (0) -- playing his last IPL game -- early, as the England stumper-batsman was out caught behind trying to cut Harbhajan.
 
From there on, Warner and Pandey paced their innings perfectly as Sunrisers raced to 91/1 at the halfway stage.
 
Harbhajan removed Warner in the 14th over with a slower one which the veteran Australian failed to read and came down the track only for Dhoni to effect a brilliant stumping.
 
Vijay Shankar (26; 20b, 4x2, 6x1) then joined hands with Pandey for a 47-run partnership before holing out to Ravidra Jadeja at deep midwicket off Deepak Chahar.
 
Shankar never really got going and after he was removed, Yusuf Pathan (5 not out) also could not up the ante.
 
Brief scores
 
Sunrisers Hyderabad: 175/3 (Manish Pandey 83 not out, David Warner 57; Harbhajan Singh 2/39) vs Chennai Super Kings
 
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Chennai opts to field first against Hyderabad

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Chennai Super Kings' skipper M S Dhoni won the toss and opted to field first against Sunrisers Hyderabad in their return fixture of the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium here on Tuesday.
 
Harbhajan Singh replaced Shardul Thakur in the Chennai playing eleven while Manish Pandey and Shakib Al Hasan came in for Shahbaz Nadeem and Kane Williamson in the Hyderabad team.
 
Playing XI:
 
Chennai Super Kings: Shane Watson, Faf du Plessis, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (Captain/wicket-keeper), Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja, Deepak Chahar, Harbhajan Singh, Imran Tahir
 
Sunrisers Hyderabad: David Warner, Jonny Bairstow (wicket-keeper), Manish Pandey, Vijay Shankar, Shakib Al Hasan, Yusuf Pathan, Deepak Hooda, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar(Captain), Sandeep Sharma, K Khaleel Ahmed
 
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Bhuvneshwar to lead SRH against CSK on Tuesday

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Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) skipper Kane Williamson will miss out on Tuesday's Indian Premier League (IPL) match against defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) owing to personal reasons. The Kiwi cricketer has reportedly returned to New Zealand.
 
In his absence, pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar will lead the Orange Army. Bhuvneshwar had also led Hyderabad when Williamson had missed a few games due to injury.
 
The Kiwi skipper is likely to rejoin the team ahead of their next match against Rajasthan Royals on April 27.
 
With five wins from nine games, Hyderabad is placed fourth in the league points-table, while Chennai sits at the second spot with seven victories from 10 games.
 
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Dhoni's heroics in vain, RCB clinch last-ball thriller against CSK

 
Chennai Super Kings (CSK) skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni's scintillating unbeaten 84 off 48 balls went in vain as his side failed to cross the line by just one run in yet another edge-of-the-seat contest against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Sunday.
 
Apart from Dhoni and Ambati Rayudu (29), all the other Chennai batsmen failed to click. However, it was their captain who almost single-handedly took his side to the verge of an impossible win before failing to snatch two runs off the final delivery of the mouth-watering clash.
 
For RCB, Umesh Yadav and Dale Steyn picked up two wickets each while Yuzvendra Chahal and Navdeep Saini shared two wickets between them.
 
Chasing a modest 162, the defending champions were off to the worst possible start as they lost opener Shane Watson (5) and Suresh Raina (0) with just six runs on board, thanks to pacer Steyn's blows on successive deliveries in the very first over.
 
Umesh further jolted CSK after packing back opener Faf du PLessis (5) and Kedhar Jadhav (9) in quick succession as the visitors were left reeling at 28/4 in 5.5 overs. 
 
Rayudu and Dhoni then forged a crucial 59-run partnership. However the former couldn't continue for long as Chahal joined the party, dismissing Rayudu in the 14th over. New batsman Ravindra Jadeja also fell soon as a confusion between him and Dhoni while taking a quick single ended the former's stay.
 
Despite wickets falling at the other end, Dhoni kept the game alive with some lusty blows enroute another half-century. With 35 needed off the final two overs, CSK lost Dwayne Bravo. 
 
But Dhoni kept his side in the hunt by hitting Saini for 10 runs before clobbering Umesh for 24 runs in the final five deliveries as it looked like Chennai will once again clinch a last-ball thriller.
 
However, Dhoni failed to collect the much-needed two runs off the final delivery as Bangalore kept their play-off hopes alive, winning their third game out of the 10 matches they have played so far. 
 
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Despite the result, Chennai stayed at the top of the points table with 14 points.
 
Earlier, opener Parthiv Patel's half-century (53 off 37) followed by Moeen Ali's quick 16-ball 26 propelled Bangalore to 161/7.
 
The Chennai bowlers kept on jolting the home side at regular intervals as Bangalore failed to post a big total, thanks to Deepak Chahar, Jadeja and Bravo, who each picked two wickets beside bowling economically on a batting friendly Chinnaswamy track.
 
Asked to bat, Bangalore received a major blow as Bravo dismissed Bangalore skipper Kohli (9) with the hosts' score reading 11 runs in the third over.
 
Parthiv was then joined by South African superstar AB de Villiers (25 off 19) and they both showed some resistance, adding 47 runs for the second wicket before Jadeja struck to dismiss the latter. de Villiers while trying to clear the boundary miscued a Jadeja delivery to hand a catch to Faf du Plessis at long-off.
 
Akshdeep Nath (24 off 20) then added 41-runs with Parthiv as Bangalore slowly inched towards the three-digit mark before Jadeja cut short the former's stay in the 13th over with the hosts placed at 99.
 
25 runs later, Parthiv was the next to depart as Bravo accounted for his wicket in the 16th over. Parthiv's innings contained couple of boundaries and four sixes.
 
Marcus Stoinis chipped in with 14 runs, while Ali's contribution saw Bangalore reaching a modest total against the defending champions. Ali's 26 runs came from five boundaries.
 
It was Bravo who once again dismissed a dangerous looking Ali, while Tahir picked Stoinis. Pawan Negi and Umesh remained unbeaten on five and one run, respectively.
 
Brief scores: Royal Challengers Bangalore 161/7 in 20 overs (Parthiv Patel 53, Moeen Ali 26; Deepak Chahar 2/26) beat Chennai Super Kings 160/8 in 20 overs (MS DHoni 84 not out, Ambati Rayudu 29; Dale Steyn 2/29) by 1 run
 
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Parthiv's 53 propels Bangalore to a fighting total

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Opener Parthiv Patel's (53 off 37) half-century followed by Moeen Ali's quick 16-ball 26 propelled Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) to 161/7 against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Sunday.
 
The Chennai bowlers kept on jolting the home side at regular intervals as Bangalore failed to post a big total, thanks to Deepak Chahar, Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo, who each picked two wickets beside bowling economically on a batting-friendly Chinnaswamy track.
 
Asked to bat first, Bangalore received a major blow as Bravo dismissed Bangalore skipper Virat Kohli (9) with the hosts' score reading 11 runs in the third over.
 
Parthiv was then joined by South African superstar AB de Villiers (25 off 19) and they both showed some resistance, adding 47 runs for the second wicket before Jadeja struck to dismiss the latter. de Villiers while trying to clear the boundary miscued a Jadeja delivery to hand a catch to Faf du Plessis at long-off.
 
Akshdeep Nath (24 off 20) then added 41 runs with Parthiv as Bangalore slowly inched towards the three-digit mark before Jadeja cut short the former's stay in the 13th over with the hosts placed at 99.
 
Parthiv was the next to depart, 25 runs later, as Bravo accounted for his wicket in the 16th over. Parthiv's innings contained couple of boundaries and four sixes.
 
Marcus Stoinis chipped in with 14 runs, while Ali's contribution saw Bangalore reaching a modest total against the defending champions. Ali's 26 runs came from five boundaries.
 
It was Bravo who once again dismissed a dangerous looking Ali, while Tahir picked Stoinis. Pawan Negi and Umesh remained unbeaten on five and one run, respectively.
 
Brief scores: Royal Challengers Bangalore 161/7 in 20 overs (Parthiv Patel 53, Moeen Ali 26; Deepak Chahar 2/26) vs Royal Challengers Bangalore.
 
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Chennai historian Muthiah dies at 89

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The chronicler of Chennai history, cartographer and journalist S. Muthiah, 89, died here on Saturday owing to age-related ailments.
 
The founder of Madras Musings, the free fortnightly that helped many a journalist learn the basics of journalism here, Muthiah also authored and co-authored histories of well-known corporate houses.
 
He also taught journalism at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan here.
 
Muthiah was also known as "Mr. Madras" for his love for Chennai that was earlier known as Madras and for his books on the city's history.
 
He is survived by two daughters Ranjani and Parvathi. Muthiah's wife Valliammai, a practising company secretary, died some years back.
 
Born in Ramanathapuram district in the Madras Presidency during the British rule, Muthiah had moved to Sri Lanka early in his life and had his initial schooling there.
 
Completing his matriculation in India, he went to the USA for higher education and came back to Colombo to start his career as a journalist with the Times of Ceylon.
 
When the Sri Lankan government turned down his application for citizenship, Muthiah came to Chennai and joined TTK Maps -- a leading publisher of maps -- that was part of the TTK group.
 
On his retirement, he decided to take up writing and also founded Madras Musings, the pioneer of free tabloid focusing on the preservation of the city's heritage buildings.
 
When the fortnightly started facing financial crunch, several well-known corporates decided to lend financial support as it was apolitical and the city's heritage was its focus.
 
Muthiah's sustained campaign through Madras Musings and otherwise to preserve the Director General of Police (DGP) building on the Marina was instrumental in its preservation instead of razing it down to raise a new building.
 
In 1999, he co-founded Chennai Heritage and was one of the key persons behind the annual Madras Day celebrations.
 
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Five workers die while digging well in TN

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In a tragic accident, five workers engaged in digging a new well in Tamil Nadu's Tiruvannamalai district were killed on Friday when a rope they had tied to their bodies for safety snapped, police said.
 
A police officer said that the rope snapped and the five fell down to a considerable depth and died.
 
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IPL: Bairstow, Warner star as SRH rout CSK in Hyderabad

Johnny Bairstow and David Warner struck blistering half-centuries to help Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) break their losing streak in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) as they defeated Chennai Super Kings (CSK) by six wickets at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, here on Wednesday.
 
SRH reached the 133-run target with 19 balls to spare to move to the fifth spot in the points table. 
 
Chasing the target, SRH got off to a flying start as both Warner and Bairstow continued with their rampage and collected 66 runs in 5.4 overs before the Australian got out after scoring an explosive 25-ball fifty which included 10 fours. 
 
Skipper Kane Williamson, who came in next, couldn't stay for very long at the crease and became the victim of leg-spinner Imran Tahir at his individual score of 3. 
 
However, Bairstow stayed at the other end to continue his prolific run in the ongoing IPL and collected boundaries at will. The explosive England opener remained unbeaten at 61. The 44-ball inning was studded with three fours and three sixes. 
 
The visitors surely missed the experience of M. S. Dhoni -- who had to sit out because of a back injury -- especially while defending the target. In Dhoni's absence, Suresh Raina captained the side. It was for the first time since 2005 that Dhoni had missed an IPL match. 
 
Earlier electing to bat, Chennai started off slowly with openers Shane Watson and Faf du Plessis fetching just 14 runs in the first four overs. Thereafter, they tried to up the ante and hit some lusty blows to take the team's score to 41 at the end of powerplay.
 
Both Watson and du Plessis looked in great touch and added 79 runs for the first wicket before both of them got out at their individual scores of 45 and 30. Thereafter, the Chennai innings fell apart and they lost wickets in a heap only to put pressure on themselves.
 
Owing to the slow nature of the wicket and some brilliant bowling performance by the SRH bowlers, the visitors amassed just 30 runs in the final five overs and crawled to 132-5 in their stipulated quota of 20 overs. It was the second defeat for the CSK in nine games, while SRH now have five wins from their eight games they have played. 
 
SRH will now take on Kolkata Knight Riders at the same venue on April 21, while CSK will travel to Bengaluru to lock horns with Royal Challengers Bangalore the same day.
 
Brief scores:
Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) 137/4 in 16.5 overs (Johnny Bairstow 61, David Warner 50, Imran Tahir 2/20); Chennai Super Kings (CSK) 132 in 20 overs (Faf du Plessis 45, Shane Watson 31, Rashid Khan 2/17) 
 
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IPL: SRH bowlers restrict CSK to 132 for five

A brilliant performance by bowlers helped Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) restrict Chennai Super Kings (CSK) to a paltry 132/5 in their Indian Premier League (IPL) match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here on Wednesday.
 
Electing to bat first, Chennai's innings started slowly with openers Shane Watson and Faf du Plessis scoring just 14 runs in the first four overs. Both Bhubaneswar Kumar and Khaleel Ahmed bowled superb lines and lengths and restrained the batsmen from scoring. 
 
But in the last two powerplay overs, both Watson and du Plessis hit some lusty shots and took the score to 41-0 at the end of six overs. Both the batsmen looked comfortable at the crease and collected boundaries at will. 
 
But left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem broke the 79-run opening partnership as he bowled Watson at 31 in the ninth over of the game. Vijay Shankar, included in the World Cup squad, celebrated his selection by sending du Plessis (45) to the hut in the next over.
 
Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayadu tried to steady the ship before star leg-spinner Rashid Khan trapped the CSK stand-in skipper in front of the wickets. Two balls later, Kedar Jadhav (1) was also caught in front of the wickets, leaving CSK in a spot at 99-4 after 14 overs. 
 
Sam Billings, included in the team in place of injured MS Dhoni, didn't trouble the scorers and became the victim of Ahmed. 
 
Ravindra Jadeja (10*) and Rayadu (25*) struggled in the death overs on a slow Hyderabad pitch and they couldn't score as many boundaries as the visitors would have liked. The SRH bowlers were disciplined towards the end of the innings and gave just 30 runs away in the last five overs. 
 
Brief scores: Chennai Super Kings 132 in 20 overs (Faf du Plessis 45, Shane Watson 31; Rashid Khan 2/17) 
 
IANS

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Chennai win toss, opt to bat vs Sunrisers Hyderabad

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Chennai Super Kings (CSK) stand-in skipper Suresh Raina won the toss and opted to bat first against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in their Indian Premier League (IPL) match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, here on Wednesday.
 
CSK's regular skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni was forced to miss the match due to a back injury. The visitors have made two changes from their previous outing, with Dhoni and Mitchell Santner being replaced by Sam Billings and Karn Sharma.
 
On the other hand for SRH, Yusuf Pathan and Shahbaz Nadeem have come for Abhishek Sharma and Ricky Bhui in the playing eleven.
 
Playing XI:
 
Chennai Super Kings: Faf du Plessis, Shane Watson, Suresh Raina (Captain), Ambati Rayudu, Sam Billings (wicket-keeper), Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Karn Sharma, Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur, Imran Tahir
 
Sunrisers Hyderabad: David Warner, Jonny Bairstow (wicket-keeper), Kane Williamson (Captain), Vijay Shankar, Yusuf Pathan, Deepak Hooda, Rashid Khan, Shahbaz Nadeem, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Sandeep Sharma, K Khaleel Ahmed
 
IANS
 

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Rs 1.48 crore cash seized from AMMK premises in Theni: IT officials

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The Income Tax (I-T) Department early on Wednesday claimed to have seized cash amounting to Rs 1.48 crore from the premises of an AMMK functionary in Andipatti in Theni district.
 
The IT officials began their search late on Tuesday and it ended at 5.30 a.m. on Wednesday, an official said.
 
He claimed that the unaccounted cash amounted to Rs 1.48 crore. "This cash was neatly packed in 94 packets/envelops on which the ward number, number of voters and the amount of Rs 300 per voter was written. All these wards are within the Andipatti Assembly segment which is going to bypoll tomorrow (Thursday)," the IT official said.
 
The premises belong to a functionary of AMMK party. In fact, the AMMK party office is functioning on the ground floor, he added.
 
According to the IT official, a person present at the premises in a sworn statement said Rs 2 crore in cash was brought in there for distribution to voters in Andipatti panchayat union area on April 16.
 
Initially, a group of party workers overpowered the flying squad persons standing guard outside the premises, broke open the door and snatched some cash packets.
 
Police had to fire warning shots that prompted the miscreants to flee with a few cash packets, but they also dropped some of them. 
 
All the remaining cash in 94 bundles (Rs 1.48 crore) was seized along with the envelopes, the IT official added.
 
A postal ballot paper for Andipatti Assembly bye-election which was already marked for AMMK candidate was also found in the premises and was seized, the officer claimed.
 
The District Collector and Superintendent of Police reached the spot and supervised the security. The police have filed an FIR against a number of persons.
 
Meanwhile, IT officials and Election Commission's static surveillance team on Tuesday night also searched the residence of Rajya Sabha member and DMK leader Kanimozhi in Thoothukudi on receipt of a tip-off.
 
The search team left empty-handed apologizing to Kanimozhi as the information turned out to be wrong.
 
IANS
 

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Police fire in air to disperse crowd in TN district

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Police on Tuesday night fired in the air in self-defence to disperse members of AMMK party who tried to prevent the officials from searching the party office in Andipatti in the district.
 
The AMMK is floated by expelled AIADMK leader T. T. V. Dhinakaran.
 
A police officer said four rounds were fired in the air as a warning as the AMMK members turned violent and tried to attack the police.
 
He said no one was injured in the incident.
 
The police had gone to the AMMK office on receipt of information about distribution of money to voters.
 
In Theni, AIADMK's P. Raveendranath Kumar, son of Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam, is locked in an electoral battle against Congress leader E. V. K. S. Elangovan and Thanga Tamil Selvan of the AMMK.
 
IANS
 

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Two days before poll, IT searches Kanimozhi's house

File photo of K. Kanimozhi
File photo of K. Kanimozhi
Income Tax officials and the Election Commission's static surveillance team on Tuesday carried out a joint search at the house of DMK Lok Sabha candidate K. Kanimozhi in Tamil Nadu's Thoothukodi on Tuesday, an official said.
 
Kanimozhi, a Rajya Sabha member, is contesting against the BJP's state unit chief Tamilisai Soundararajan in the Thootukodi Lok Sabha constituency.
 
Polling to all 39 seats in Tamil Nadu is slated for April 18 in the second stage of the Lok Sabha polls. However, on Tuesday, the President rescinded the election in Vellore parliamentary constituency on the recommendation of the Election Commission after a huge haul of cash was found there. 
 
IANS
 
 
 
 

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SC stays execution of youth in Suruli rape, murders

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday stayed the execution of a man, ordered to be hanged on April 22 after being given death sentence for raping a woman and for murdering her and her lover.
 
The couple was on an outing in the Suruli waterfalls in Theni District of Tamil Nadu, when they were brutally murdered.
 
A man along with his girlfriend had gone to the Suruli waterfalls on May 14, 2011. One Diwakar, now 30-year-old, brutally attacked and killed the boy and raped the girl. She was also murdered later. 
 
IANS
 
 
 
 
 

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