Techie’s death: Tamil Nadu government frowns on illegal hoardings

Coming down heavily on the Tamil Nadu government over illegal hoardings, the Madras High Court on Friday wondered how many more lives should be lost as a result of such banners, endangering the lives of people.

A day after a 23-year old woman techie came under the wheels of a water tanker after she fell down losing balance when an illegal hoarding crashed on her in a city suburb, the court asked if the government will take a firm stand against such unauthorised banners.

“How many more litres of blood the state government needs to paint the roads with,” a Division Bench of Justices M Sathyanarayanan and N Seshasayee wondered.

The court asked whether at least now Chief Minister K Palaniswami will be willing to issue a statement against such unauthorised banners.

“There is zero respect for lives in this country,” the court said pointing to “sheer bureaucratic apathy.”

“We have lost faith in this government,” the court observed.

The observations were made came when the bench heard a plea by social activist ‘Traffic’ Ramaswamy and an urgent mentioning by advocates V Lakshminarayanan and V Kannadasan.

They brought to the court’s notice the techie’s death on Thursday following crashing of the illegal hoarding.

“Just imagine the girl could have contributed to the GDP of this nation. Couldn’t that politician have conducted the family marriage without banners?” the court asked.

At least now the political parties must start a movement against such illegalities, the court said.

The bench then directed the appearance of police officers and Chennai corporation officials in charge the area where the accident occurred to be present in the court later in the day and adjourned the plea’s hearing.

The techie riding a two-wheeler lost balance and fell down after an illegal hoarding put up by an AIADMK functionary crashed on her and she was run over by a water tanker that came just behind her.

Plea in HC for setting up judicial panel to probe Jayalalitha’s death

A petition has been filed in the Madras High Court for setting up an inquiry commission, headed by a retired high court judge, to find out the “truth” behind the death of former chief minister J Jayalalithaa in December last year.

The petitioner also sought an interim injunction restraining the state ministers from issuing any statements pertaining to the death.

The petitioner, Muruganandham of Thiruvarur district, who claims to be a loyal AIADMK worker, submitted that he filed the plea acceding to requests by other AIADMK workers for setting up of a judicial inquiry commission to find the cause and truth behind the sudden demise of the former chief minister.

Chief Minister K Palaniswami had announced a probe by a retired high court judge into the death last month, conceding a key demand of the O Panneerselvam camp for merger with his faction.

The Panneerselvam camp had raised suspicions over the death.

But till this day no such commission has been formed, the petitioner submitted.

He further submitted that when the government’s motive is to find out the truth, attributing motives to some party leaders by the ministers themselves “will amount to interfering in the functions of the proposed commission.