Jayalaitha Jayaram the Kannadiga C M of Tamil Nadu

Read this article about the biography of Ms (Selvi) J Jayalalitha the most famous Mysorean woman. She was poor and had to discontinue studies for want of finance. From that position she has reached a position of occupying the seat of Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu for the third time. Born in a place near Mysore and migrated to Chennai for livelihood. She entered in politics and became a power to reckon with. For her followers she is Amma and Puratchi Thalaivi.

Birth & childhood of Jayalalitha

J Jayalalitha
Jayalalitha was born on 24th February, 1948 in a Mandyam Iyengar Family in Melukote in Pandavapura Thaluk of Mandya District in Karnataka State very near to Mysore. She was known as Komalavalli. Her father was a wealthy lawyer. He died when his daughter was only 2 years old having lost all the money. On the death of her father Jayalalitha's mother shifted to Bangalore to her parents place. At Bangalore Jayalalitha went to Bishop Cotton Girl's High School. Her grandfather (father's father) was in the service as a surgeon, of the then Maharaja of Mysore late Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar of Mysore. It is said that the prefix 'Jaya' of Jayalalitha is kept to reflect this association with the Maharaja. Her mother took up the work of acting in Tamil films in Chennai under the screen name Sandhya. Jayalalitha joined the Sacred Heart Matriculation School (popularly known as Church Park Presentation Convent or Presentation Church Park Convent), Chennai and completed matriculation from there. She was a brilliant student. She was offered scholarship for further studies and the Stella Maris College but due to poor financial condition, she could not pursue her education.

Career in films of Puratchi Thalaivi

During her studies in the school, Jayalalitha was persuaded by her mother to work in films, only during leisure and vacations without affecting her studies. She acted in an English film 'Epistle'. The film was released in 1961. Her debut as a heroine was in a Kannada film at the age of 15, while still studying in the school. The Kannada cinema by the name Chinnada Gombe was released in 1964. She got her chance in Tamil film Vennira Adai in 1965. She got a chance in Telugu film Manushulu Mamathalu. In Tamil films the first heroine to appear in skirts was Jayalalitha. She had acted in several films with the legendary Tamil Actors M G Ramachandran and Sivaji Ganeshan besides other leading actors like B Saroja Devi, Ravichandran and Jaishankar etc. Her film with Sivaji Ganeshan Pattikada pattanama won the National Film Award in Tamil and she got the best actress award from Filmfare 1972. She was the first recipient of Filmfare Awards for best actress in Tamil and Telugu when Filmfare introduced the prizes for these languages in 1972 and 1973. Her film with Sivaji Ganeshan Deiva Magan was the 1st Tamil film submitted for the Best Foreign Film in the contest for Academy Award. She had acted in Hindi films too in Izzat with Dharmendra. She was a successful film actress in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Hindi film world at the time she entered the politics.

Political activity of Amma

Her association with the late M G Ramachandran brought her to the political field. When the DMK split and M G R founded the party AIADMK and became the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu along with his acting career. He made Jayalalitha the party's Propaganda Secretary. In 1984 She was nominated to Rajya Sabha. Gradually she became the political heir of M G R. On the death of MGR a powerful section of the party tried to alienate her with propping up Janaki Ramachandran the wife of M G R. In 1989 she was elected to the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly. In 1991 she was elected as the leader of Opposition, the first woman to occupy that position. In 1991 she forged an alliance with the Congress under the Rajiv Gandhi. Just few days before the elections Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated and the alliance made her to get the benefit of the sympathy wave and the coalition got majority in the elections. She got re-elected to the assembly and became the first elected chief minister and youngest chief minister of Tamil Nadu lasting for the full term 24-6-1991 to 12-5-1996. Technically Janaki Ramachandran was the first Chief Minister, but she did not get reelected. In the 1996 elections she lost power and she all her party leaders were trounced. There were several allegations against her of corruption. Again in 2006 she came to power and became the chief minister for the 2nd time, though there were cases of corruption going on against her. In 20042 and 2008 her party lost the elections. Again in 2011 her party came back with sweeping majority. She is sworn in as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu for the 3rd time. Her smile, gentle voice and the gracious look is a deception. Behind that there is an iron lady. She knows the temperament of people, their pulse and knows how to tap the same in her favour. She is the only effective challenge to Dr M Karunanidhi and he is her effective challenge – a check for each other. However Karunanidhi is very old and is losing his charm and strength.

She is an unshakable force in Tamil Nadu today. She is basking in the unstinted support of a very large section of the Tamil population. For them she is their Amma (mother) and Puratchi Thalaivi (revolutionary leader). If anyone wants to know a powerful leader with blind faith of masses, Jayalalitha is one. For her followers she incorruptible, who cannot do any wrong, who is pro poor, though she is having several charges of corruption, has done several wrongs and has not done anything special for the poor. She has the blind faith of the people.

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