Sekarreporter: Former Tamil Nadu Assembly Speaker, P.H. Pandian, no more: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/former-tamil-nadu-assembly-speaker-ph-pandian-no-more/article30477032.ece

[1/4, 12:09] Sekarreporter: Former Tamil Nadu Assembly Speaker, P.H. Pandian, no more: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/former-tamil-nadu-assembly-speaker-ph-pandian-no-more/article30477032.ece
[1/4, 12:09] Sekarreporter: Mr. Pandian, who was the Speaker of the Tamil Nadu Assembly between February 27, 1985 and February 5, 1989, died at a private hospital in Chennai on Saturday morning
Former Speaker of the Tamil Nadu Assembly and senior advocate Paul Hector Pandian, popularly known as P.H. Pandian, died in a private hospital in Porur in Chennai on Saturday morning. He was 74.
[1/4, 12:09] Sekarreporter: Mr. Pandian is survived by his sons, P.H. Paul Manoj Pandian, a former MP, Aravindh Pandian, a leading corporate lawyer, Naveen Pandian, a doctor, Vinodh Pandian an advocate and daughter Devamani Pandian, a gynaecologist. His wife, a renowned educationist Cynthia Pandian, was the Vice-Chancellor of Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Tirunelveli. She died in January 2018.

Mr. Pandian, who was proclaimed to have ‘sky-high powers’ when he was the Speaker of the Tamil Nadu Assembly, breathed his last after being hospitalised for nearly 45 days.

A staunch loyalist of former Chief Minister and founder of AIADMK M.G. Ramachandran, Mr. Pandian was elected to the Tamil Nadu Assembly from Cheranmahadevi constituency, his native place, in 1977, and continued his victorious streak in the 1980, 1984 and 1989 Assembly polls. He was the Speaker of the Tamil Nadu Assembly between February 27, 1985 and February 5, 1989, during which he disqualified 10 DMK MLAs for having burnt copies of the Indian Constitution. In the period before that, he served as Deputy Speaker.

The AIADMK, after the demise of MGR, had suffered a vertical split and the factions led by Jayalalalithaa and V.N. Janaki, MGR’s wife, faced the Assembly polls in 1989. Mr. Pandian, who backed the Janaki faction, was the one among only two candidates to emerge victorious from that group. He was elected to the Lok Sabha from the Tirunelveli constituency in 1999 and went on to become the organising secretary of the AIADMK after he managed to mend his strained relationship with party supremo Jayalalithaa.

After the demise of Jayalalithaa, he refused to accept her close confidante V.N. Sasikala as the party’s next leader and had sharply criticised her and her husband M. Natarajan, accusing them of ruining the party. He had also raised suspicions about the death of Jayalalithaa, claiming she had died ‘under unnatural circumstances’. He pitched his support for O. Panneerselvam during the split and later joined the AIADMK, serving as its organising secretary.

When the Manonmaniam Sundaranar University was scouting for land for the construction of a permanent building for its Mano College functioning in Cheranmahadevi, Mr. Pandian donated 5 acres of his property nearby Govindaperi.

The funeral will be held on Sunday at 3 pm at the Kilpauk Cemetery in Chennai.

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