Tamil Nadu has witnessed one crisis after another and each time the million-dollar question asked is why doesn't such an important state have a full-time governor. C Vidyasagar Rao, who is the acting governor of the state also holds full charge of Maharashtra.
Appointing a governor is the discretion of the government and no one in the power corridors of the National Capital have been able to give a concrete explanation as why this treatment has been meted out to Tamil Nadu.
It has been half a week since O Panneerselvam stepped down as chief minister of TN. His resignation was accepted by Rao and OPS was told continue as a care-taker CM. The AIADMK has chosen a new leader, Sasikala Natarajan, but she has not been invited to form the government.
In the midst of this, OPS dropped a bombshell stating that he was forced to resign. Although he does not have the numbers, he still feels that he is a contender to the post. Where is the governor in all this? He is scheduled to arrive at 2 pm on Thursday and the fate of the AIADMK lies in his hand.
When the crisis was playing out, the governor was 1,300 kilometres away at a convocation ceremony in Mumbai.
Why does TN not have a governor?
Tamil Nadu has a population of 8 crore. It is known as the gateway to India from South. It is a politically-charged state which has two key parties which have always had a say in national politics.
In such an event it is important to note that the state has had an in-charge governor since September 2016. In today's scenario the governor is the most important functionary in the state. He is the head of the government and in his absence a lot of things come to a stand-still especially during a political crisis.
Had he been in Chennai, this crisis would not have played out for so long. All that the governor has to do in such a scenario is call upon the persons with the major support to form the government. In case there is no clarity, he will have to either direct the parties to test their strength on the floor of the house and if that fails, impose President's Rule.
In August 2016, there was speculation that a full-time governor would be appointed in Tamil Nadu. However, the Centre decided to give Rao additional charge of the state.
None in Delhi are able to explain why such a decision was taken. Is it because the Bharatiya Janata Party has no presence in Tamil Nadu? The party is nurturing ambitions of gaining entry into the state, but that does not appear to be a reality for long. Moreover, Rao's services would be used more in Maharashtra where the BJP has a good standing; and Rao's presence in Maharashtra is important today in the event of the Shiv Sena threatening to pull out of the government.