Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami dropped Manikandan from his Cabinet hours after the latter accused Palaniswami of unilaterally slashing monthly tariff collected by Tamilnadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation from households. A Raj Bhavan communique said Governor Banwarilal Purohit had accepted the Chief Minister’s recommendation.
This is the first time that Palaniswami has dropped a Minister from the Cabinet. Earlier, he had undertaken a minor reshuffle of the ministry. Udhayakumar briefly held the IT portfolio when Jayalalithaa was Chief Minister in 2011. Manikandan said Amma (Jayalalithaa) wanted to distribute set-top boxes (STB) free of cost and fix the monthly tariff at ₹70 but the government declined to bear the cost of STBs.