A group of workers from the unified AIADMK today burnt an effigy of sidelined party deputy general secretary Dhinakaran near the resort where MLAs loyal to him are staying. Led by former MLA Om Sakthi Segar, they also hurled slippers at Dhinakaran’s photo and shouted slogans against him and his aunt V K Sasikala. Addressing the workers, Segar said he was going to hand a petition to the district collector and SP asking them to instruct the MLAs to vacate the resort in the “larger interest of law and order”. He alleged that the Congress-led Puducherry government was trying to cause a split in the AIADMK by letting the MLAs stay in the resort here. MLAs of the Dhinakaran camp yesterday met Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao in Chennai to state that they had lost confidence in Chief Minister K Palaniswami. Though the governor’s office confirmed the meeting, it did not mention the number of MLAs who met Rao. Some reports put the number at 19.
“We are going to initiate efforts to bring in a new chief minister with the help of our supporting MLAs,” Dhinakaran supporter and Andipatti MLA Thanga Tamil Selvan said after the meeting. “We have informed the governor that we don’t have confidence in the chief minister,” Selvan said, a day after the merger of the two rival factions led by Palaniswami and rebel leader O Panneerselvam, a former chief minister. After meeting the governor, the MLAs backing Dhinakaran went to the resort in the coastal village of Chinna Veerampattinam, about 20 km from here. “We have come here to take rest,” Selvan had said yesterday.
He declined to disclose how long the legislators would stay here. There was no clarity on the number of MLAs staying at the resort.