Former Tamil Nadu chief minister and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) leader O Panneerselvam are scheduled to appear before the Arumugasamy Commission on Monday which is investigating the death of J Jayalalithaa.
Fresh summons were issued to O Panneerselvam on March 9 in connection with the probe into the death of former Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa.
The Commission had asked O Panneerselvam to appear before it on March 21. J Ilavarasi, the sister-in-law of Jayalalithaa’s aide VK Sasikala, is also expected to appear before the Commission in connection with the investigation on Monday.
About Arumugasamy Commission
The Tamil Nadu government had appointed the inquiry commission led by retired Madras High Court judge Justice A Arumugasamy to probe the death of former chief minister J Jayalalithaa on September 25, 2017.
The appointment of the commission of inquiry, the Arumugasamy Commission, was necessitated after a series of flip-flops by ministers in the state government and the rival camps of AIADMK on the conditions leading up to Amma’s death.
Jayalalithaa had died of a heart attack on December 5, 2016, after a prolonged treatment for infection and other complications.
A month before the Commission was made, the then CM, EK Palaniswami, had announced on that a judicial probe would be set up. The probe was one of the key conditions for the merger of the two rival factions of the AIADMK led by the then CM and O Panneerselvam, a Jayalalithaa loyalist.
Panneerselvam’s demand for probe
The formation of the inquiry commission also came amid Panneerselvam’s demand for a CBI probe into the “mysterious death" of Jayalalithaa.
Panneerselvam has long maintained that he or his supporters were not allowed to see Jayalalithaa in the hospital even though they had stayed put at the hospital all along her 75-day stay.
Panneerselvam had claimed that the Sasikala camp did not even listen to suggestions that Jayalalithaa should be taken to the UK or the US for treatment.
The announcement of the probe in 2017 had come just days after Tamil Nadu forest minister Dindigul C Srinivasan admitted that he had lied about Jayalalithaa’s improving health.
Srinivasan had said that party leaders lied about Amma’s death because they were afraid of Sasikala. “Whoever came, would be briefed by Sasikala’s relatives that she was ‘all right’," he had said.
Controversies surrounding the Commission
The Arumugasamy Commission has been part of several controversies since it has been set up. In December 2018, Apollo Hospital, where J Jayalalithaa was admitted, clashed with the Commission, claiming that the deposition documents of over 50 doctors were full of errors due to the inability of the panel to comprehend medical terminology, reports said.
Commission’s counsel then accused the hospital of colluding with VK Sasikala to not provide Jayalalithaa with the ‘best recommended treatment’.
Last year, the Apollo Hospitals management in Chennai told the Supreme Court that their doctors skipped summons issued by the Arumugasamy Commission, citing that they “do not have any faith in its functioning".
The Apollo management had also said CCTV cameras were removed from the hospital at the behest of the then AIADMK government