Senior AIADMK leader and former Tamil Nadu Assembly Speaker P H Pandian died at a private hospital here this morning after a prolonged illness. Pandian, who was elected to Lok Sabha from Tirunelveli in 1999, had been undergoing treatment at the Sri Ramachandra Medical Centre at suburban Porur for the last few months. He died of heart failure. His end came at 09:04 hrs, Hospital sources said. A close associate of AIADMK Founder and former Chief Minister MGR, he had served as Assembly Speaker from 1985 to 1989.He was also elected to the State Assembly from his native Cheranmahadevi constituency in Tirunelveli district in the 1977, 1980 and 1984 elections.
He had also served as Deputy Speaker from 1980 to 1984.Pandian was one of the only two candidates elected to the State Assembly, representing the Janaki Ramachandran faction of AIADMK in 1989, when he won the Cheranmahadevi seat, afterthe death of MGR.He was one of the senior AIADMK leaders who had not supported the ascension of V K Sasikala within the party after the death of Jayalalithaa in December 2016.Pandian also hit out against Sasikala's chief ministerial candidacy in February 2017, asserting that she was unfit for the post.