2019 LS polls: At 105, Tamil nadu man gets ready for another election

In the last century, 105-year-old MAM Palaniyappa Chettiar has seen many ups and downs, both political and social.

Published: 28th March 2019 03:12 AM  |   Last Updated: 28th March 2019 03:53 PM   |  A+A-

MAM Palaniyappa Chettiar

MAM Palaniyappa Chettiar

Express News Service

SIVAGANGA: He was there during the fag end of the British rule; he was there when a new India was born; he has seen many ups and downs, both political and social, in the last century. But they all helped fortify his belief in democracy.

Meet 105-year-old MAM Palaniyappa Chettiar, arguably, the oldest voter in the country. A resident of Rayavaram village of Arimalam block of Thirumayam Assembly segment in Pudukottai district that falls under Sivaganga Parliamentary constituency, he has never missed an election held after independence.  

Ask him about elections and Palaniyappa, who is fondly called as ‘Thatha’ or ‘Aiya’, would say, “Casting vote is my right. Elections would help develop the area, district, State and the nation.” He urged youngsters to cast their votes without fail and to elect candidates judiciously. Born on December 19, 1914, Palaniyappa has been residing in the same locality over the years.


After independence, at least 15 Lok Sabha and 15 Assembly elections were held. The oldest voter, who is getting ready to cast vote in the upcoming parliamentary elections on April 18, said that it was not at all difficult for him to handle the electronic voting machine.K Arunachalam (60), the grandson of Palaniyappa, said that Aiya was an inspiration for the family as well as for the people in the locality. “If he is so determined to cast vote at 105 years of age, why can’t we?,” he asked.   

Tension-free life and regular walking are the secret behind the oldest-voter’s health. “Everyday, he goes for morning walk and is very keen on maintaining his diet,” Arunachalam said, adding that Aiya always carry out his work on his own. 

Though a century has passed since his birth, Palaniyappa Chettiar is young at heart and a lover of cricket. He is an ardent fan of Indian wicket keeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni. “I am a follower of Chennai Super Kings team in Indian Premier League,” said Palaniappa Chettiar who watches IPL matches every day before going to bed.

Stay up to date on all the latest Tamil Nadu news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp