Chennai, Dec 10: The Tamil Nadu cabinet which was sworn in after the death of Jayalalithaa will meet for the first time on Saturday. It will be a closely-watched event by many as questions are already being raised as to how the government and the AIADMK would function in the absence of their tallest leader.
Many questions have been raised: Will Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Paneerselvam (OPS) occupy Jayalalithaa's chair? When he was sworn in as de-factor chief minister, he had refused to occupy Amma's seat, twice in the past.
The fear/respect/love for Amma was visible in the cabinet meetings of the past. The meeting would begin with OPS and the rest wiping their tears. Amma's seat would be left vacant. However there would be a photograph of Amma on the table to make it look as though she was always in charge.
The OPS dramatics in the absence of Amma were widely publicised and made interesting reading. When Jayalalithaa was sent to jail in connection with the disproportionate assets case, OPS battled tears while he was talking oath as CM. He did not convene an asssembly session when Amma was in jail.
Political analysts in Tamil Nadu would watch closely the developments in the state. The AIADMK which only recently won the elections has a long tenure ahead.
One must also make a mention of the dramatic photograph of Amma with OPS before the budget was presented. The budget box held by OPS was with a picture of Amma on it.
All eyes are on OPS now. Would he continue to function like how he always did in the past or will he come out of the shadows and show that he is a leader?
Only time will tell.