Former Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa's properties go to her niece and nephew
28 May 2020
The Madras High Court has declares former Tamil Nadu chief minister’s niece and nephew J Deepa and J Deepak as legal heirs of all of Jayalalithaa's assets – both movable and immovable – ending a three-year-long court battle.
As per the Madras High Court order, properties and other immovable assets of the former chief minister valued at over Rs884 crore, will not be turned into a memorial as the ruling party wanted it.
Reports citing Deepa said the Poes Gardens residence will not be turned into a memorial and that Veda Nilayam, as the Poes Garden property is named, will stay within the family.
The division bench of the court itself has labelled a memorial for Jayalalithaa as unnecessary and a waste of public money. The court, at one stage, suggested as an alternative that a portion of the residence can be turned into a memorial and the rest of it into the official residence of chief ministers to come, Deepa opposed it.
"Today the AIADMK may be in power and want to have an office there, but they are not going to stay in the government forever. What is the guarantee that the next Chief Minister will work from there?" she asks. "So, we (the family) are definitely going to want possession of the building," a TNM report quotef deepa as saying.
The former AIADMK chief's total assets as per her 2016 election affidavit was pegged at Rs. 117.13. However the court stated that as per documents submitted by appellants the value of her assets will be over Rs1,000 crore.
Terming the judgement given by the division bench of the Madras High Court as 'excellent', Deepa also tore into the AIADMK government, terming their move to acquire the property as political and an effort to discredit her family.
The government acquired Veda Nilayam on 6 May even as case over the inheritance of the property was underway in the Madras High Court. Chennai Collector R Seethalakshmi issued a declaration that the acquisition of the property that served as Jayalalithaa's residence for 40 years, is needed for a 'public purpose'. The state further claimed that there was nobody to compensate for this acquisition as there were no 'Project affected persons'.
"This AIADMK government was elected to power because of my aunt but they showed no respect to our family. They should have respectfully spoken to us, sat across the table and held a discussion. But instead they used their power to suppress us, show their might and establish that we had no say in our aunt's properties," she stated.
"We understand that they worshipped her but taking over the property like this is not the right thing for a government to do. Now they have to follow the rule of law and not acquire land as they wish. This is a fight for not just us, but all common people who are being treated unfairly."
For J Deepa, the niece of former chief minister J Jayalalithaa and the founder of MGR Amma Deepa Peravai, whose was restricted from even entering Veda Nilayam, the official residence of her aunt in June 2017, the court decision is a sweet revenge.