AIADMK: EPS-OPS faction removes Sasikala from general secretary post
Chennai: The largest faction of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) on Tuesday sacked V.K. Sasikala as interim general secretary and her nephew TTV Dhinakaran as deputy general secretary of Tamil Nadu’s ruling party even as the opposition moved the courts for a floor test of the government’s strength.
After months of bickering, the party’s general council decided that there will be no general secretary any longer, and that late chief minister J. Jayalalithaa will remain the ‘eternal general secretary’ of the party.
The meeting was attended by chief minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami, deputy chief minister O. Panneerselvam and chaired by presidium chairman E. Madhusudhanan.
The faction claimed that 2130 general council members attended the meeting and approved all the resolutions. The AIADMK general council has 2,780 members.
The general council, which passed 12 resolutions, also decided to set up an 11-member steering committee to take decisions on party affairs.
“Appointment of Sasikala stands cancelled,” said a resolution passed by the meeting. All decisions taken by Sasikala and appointments made by her are invalid, the council decided. Also nullified were the new appointments and removal of members made by Dhinakaran.
However, the council resolved to allow the office-bearers appointed by Jayalalithaa and they will continue to hold their posts.
Panneerselvam and Palaniswami will be convenor and joint convenor respectively of the party. The council also resolved to give all rights of the general secretary to the two convenors.
“Dhinakaran has no locus standi to criticise us. Amma (Jayalalithaa) had kept him away from party affairs for 10 years,” said Palaniswami.
The council resolved to retrieve the party’s two leaves symbol and name which have been frozen by the Election Commission in view of the factional fight.
Dhinakaran told reporters in Madurai that the meeting was invalid because it was held without the consent of the general secretary—Sasikala.
Dhinakaran, who is said to control at least 21 legislators, said that he had undertaken efforts to “send home this regime” led by Palaniswami. “I would take some important decisions in a day or two,” he added.
Meanwhile, the opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) moved the Madras high court to direct governor C. Vidyasagar Rao to convene the legislative assembly and call for a floor test.
The HC, on Monday, while hearing a plea by the Dhinakaran faction to stall the general council meeting, directed that any decision in Tuesday’s meeting would be subject to the court’s decision in the next hearing on 23 October.