Chennai: T.T.V. Dhinakaran took oath on Friday as a member of the Tamil Nadu legislative assembly after winning the byelection for former chief minister, the late J. Jayalalithaa’s R.K. Nagar constituency as an independent candidate. Dhinakaran won the byelection by a margin of over 40,000 votes on Sunday.

After the swearing-in, Dhinakaran criticised some members of the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) for working for their “own selfish motive".

Hours before Dhinkaran was sworn in, the AIADMK sacked more than 100 party functionaries who supported the rebel faction under Dhinakaran’s leadership. Following its loss in the R.K. Nagar by-election, AIADMK’s has been cracking the whip against Dhinakaran’s aides.

On Thursday, AIADMK coordinator O Panneerselvam and co-coordinator Edappadi K. Palaniswami announced the removal of 44 functionaries from the party’s primary membership.

Dhinakaran got 89,013 votes, or more than 50% of the total votes polled in the high-profile seat. E. Madhusudhanan of the ruling (AIADMK) got 48,306 votes, N. Marudhu Ganesh of the opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) lost his deposit, having polled just 24,651 votes. A total of 59 candidates were in the fray.

Meanwhile, the opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) convened a high-level committee meeting on Friday evening to analyse its failure in the bypoll. DMK’s poor performance in the R.K. Nagar bypoll, despite the infighting in the AIADMK, is seen as a big setback for the party which had the support of the Congress, the Left parties, VCK, Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and other small parties.