Amid the political uncertainty in Tamil Nadu and the rumours of a possible merger between the OPS and Sasikala camp, Panneerselvam confirmed on Tuesday that a committee has been formed. While talking to the news agency ANI, the former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu said Sasikala faction of AIADMK has formed a committee to conduct talks on a merger. According to the agency, both the camps of the All Anna India Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) met on Monday night to discuss a possible merger and unification.
The focus of the meeting was on the residences of Thangamani and Udumalai Radhakrishnan where two separate meetings went on to discuss the resignation of Sasikala’s nephew T.T.V. Dhinakaran and being a back seat driver of the party. Briefing the media after the meeting, Tamil Nadu Finance Minister D. Jayakumar said all 123 AIADMK lawmakers and party cadres were on the same page and discussed the possibilities of retaining the ‘Two Leaves’ symbol, which had been frozen by the Election Commission.
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“We discussed keeping the party united. O. Panneerselvam gave an opinion which we welcome. We discussed how we can take the party forward in a united way,” Jayakumar said. “Having welcomed his opinion, we will further hold discussions and deliberate about the merger,” he added. Jayakumar further said that an affidavit would be given to the Election Commission to claim the AIADMK’s symbol. “This is like a fight between brothers. We will unite and retrieve the two leaves symbol together,” senior AIADMK leader Velumani said.
Yesterday a case was registered against the AIADMK general secretary V.K. Sasikala’s nephew T.T.V. Dhinakaran for allegedly bribing the Election Commission officials to allot the ‘two leaves’ symbol to their faction. Reacting to the incident, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy said, “I have to see the FIR because all they have got is some Chandrashekhar and whatever statement he has made. Now it’s very strange that they bribed the Election Commission, but got a judgment which froze their symbol against them. I hope it has a credibility and is not a political witch-hunt.”
(with input from agency)