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Politics & War

Politics & War

Jayaram Jayalalithaa

Jayaram Jayalalithaa





  • Jayalalithaa was born on 24 February 1948 at Melukote, Pandavapura taluka, Mandya district, then in Mysore State (now Karnataka) to Jayaram and Vedavalli in Tamil Brahmin Iyengar family.
  • Jayalalithaa’s father, Jayaram, was a lawyer but never worked and squandered most of the family money. He died when Jayalalithaa was two years old. The widowed Vedavalli returned to her father’s home in Bangalore in 1950.
  • Vedavalli learnt shorthand and typewriting to take up a clerical position to help support the family in 1950


  • After her aunt Padmavalli’s marriage in 1958, Jayalalitha moved to Madras and began to live with her mother. She completed her education at Sacred Heart Matriculation School.
  • She won Gold State Award for coming first in 10th standard in the state of Tamil Nadu.She joined Stella Maris College however discontinued her studies due pressure from her mother and became a film actress. She was fluent in several languages, including Tamil, Arabic, Telugu, Kannada, Hindi, Malayalam and English


  • In Chennai, Jayalalithaa was trained in Carnatic music, western classical piano and various forms of classical dance.
  • While a child, Jayalalithaa acted in the Kannadalanguage film Sri Shaila Mahathme (1961).
  • Jayalalithaa accompanied her mother to a party related to the film and was spotted by Panthulu, who then decided to cast her opposite Kalyankumar in the Kannada movie Chinnada Gombe. the Kannada debut film became a blockbuster in 1964 and she became a well-known face.


  • By end of 1965, she had become popular among film producers and direcors. Between 1964 and 1966 she did around 35 shows of drama named Malathy and later discontinued as she became very busy in films.
  • She had 11 successful releases in Tamil in 1966. Jayalalithaa acted in twelve films as heroine opposite N. T. Rama Rao, in Telugu.
  • Between 1965 and 1973, Jayalalithaa starred opposite M. G. Ramachandran in a number of successful filmsShe acted with Ravichandran in ten films. Jayalalithaa was paired opposite Sivaji Ganesan in 17 films.


  • She and Saroja Devi have been cited as the first female superstars of Tamil Cinema. Jayalalithaa denied claims that MGR, who had been chief minister for the state since 1977, was instrumental in introducing her to politics.
  • In 1982, she joined the AIADMK, which was founded by MGR. In 1984, when MGR was incapacitated due to a stroke.She successfully led the campaign in the 1984 general elections, in which the ADMK allied with the Congress.
  • Following his death in 1987, the AIADMK split into two factions: one supported his widow, Janaki Ramachandran This faction was called AIADMK(JA)and the other favoured Jayalalithaa called AIADMK(J) .


  • At the age of 41, Jayalalithaa entered the Assembly successfully contesting the subsequent 1989 elections on the basis of being MGR’s political heir. She was elected to the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly in 1989 as a representative of the Bodinayakkanur.
  • In 1991, following the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi days before the elections, her alliance with the Indian National Congress enabled her to ride the wave of sympathy that gave the coalition victory.
  • The Jayalalithaa-led AIADMK lost power in the 1996 elections, when it won 4 of the 168 seats that they contested


  • There were several corruption cases filed against her by the ruling DMK government headed by Karunanidhi. Jayalalithaa was arrested on 7 December 1996 and was remanded to 30-day judicial custody in connection with the Colour TV scam.
  • Jayalalithaa was barred from standing as a candidate in the 2001 elections because she was found guilty of criminal offences.
  • Subsequently, in March 2003, Jayalalithaa assumed the position of Chief Minister once more, having been acquitted of some charges by the Chennai High Court.


  • She began to be referred as ‘People’s CM’ (Makallin Mudhalvar) and Iron Lady of India by end of this term. After another period (2006–11) in the opposition, Jayalalithaa was sworn in as chief minister for the fourth time after the AIADMK swept the 2011 assembly election.
  • On 27 September 2014, Jayalalithaa was sentenced to four years in jail and fined Rs.100 crore by the Special Court in Bangalore in a disproportionate-assets case.
  • She was automatically disqualified from the post of CM and the legislative assembly of Tamil Nadu, and thus became the first Indian chief minister to be disqualified. O. Panneerselvam, a minister in her party, succeeded her as the Chief Minister on 29 September 2014.On 17 October 2014, the Supreme Court granted her two months’ bail and suspended her sentence


  • The acquittal allowed her once again to hold office and on 23 May 2015, Jayalalithaa was sworn in as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu for the fifth time.
  • In the 2016 assembly election, she became the first Tamil Nadu chief minister since MGR in 1984 to be voted back into office. That September, she fell severely ill and, following 75 days of hospitalisation, died on 5 December 2016 due to cardiac arrest.