AIADMK merger on the cards, with Sasikala, TTV Dinakaran sidelined2 min read . Updated: 19 Apr 2017, 03:58 AM IST
Tamil Nadu minister D. Jayakumar says AIADMK cadre wishes that Sasikala and TTV Dinakaran are kept away from party affairs
Chennai: V.K. Sasikala, her nephew T.T.V. Dinakaran and her family have been ousted from the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) and its government in Tamil Nadu, said state minister D. Jayakumar on Tuesday night.
“The 1.5 crore cadres of the AIADMK wish that Dinakaran and his family are kept away from the party affairs. So we have decided that Dinakaran and his family will not have any influence in matters of the party and government," said D. Jayakumar, state minister for finance and fisheries. A committee will be formed to decide on the further course of action.
Earlier in the day, former Tamil Nadu chief minister O. Panneerselvam reiterated his demand for the ouster of Sasikala and Dinakaran from the AIADMK amid indications that the two warring factions of the ruling party were finally headed for a merger.
It remains unclear if ‘interim’ general secretary Sasikala, in jail in a disproportionate assets case, and deputy general secretary Dinakaran, wanted by police for allegedly trying to bribe election officials, can be removed from the party.
On Tuesday morning, Panneerselvam told reporters that Sasikala, Dinakaran and others from Sasikala’s family must be expelled from the party if its two factions—one headed by Sasikala and the other by Panneerselvam—were to merge.
“This is not a precondition. These are the basic policies of the AIADMK and the party cannot be controlled by one family," he said.
Panneerselvam said Sasikala’s appointment as the general secretary was against the by-laws of the party. “Hence, the appointments or removals that she made stand invalid"—an apparent reference to Dinakaran, who was appointed by his aunt.
Dinakaran has been facing the heat in the last few weeks over speculation that he has been asked to step down by senior leaders in his own camp.
There was fresh trouble on Monday, when the Delhi police filed an FIR against him for allegedly trying to bribe Election Commission (EC) officials with Rs50 crore in exchange for the party’s frozen ‘two leaves’ symbol.
On Tuesday, Tamil Nadu minister K. A. Sengottaiyan, after holding discussions with Dinakaran, said, “We briefed Dinakaran about yesterday’s (Monday’s) discussions. We will take all efforts to stay united and reclaim the party’s symbol."
Dinakaran was away in Bengaluru on Monday to meet Sasikala who is lodged in a prison there.
Panneerselvam revolted against Sasikala in February, alleging that he was forced to resign as CM so she could install herself in his place. The ruling party has been in a disarray since then but things appear to be looking up now.
“We are ready for merger," Panneerselvam had said on Monday.
Lok Sabha deputy speaker and AIADMK member of Parliament M. Thambidurai welcomed the comment. “We are united and there is no split in the party. There is only difference of opinion." Thambidurai said after meeting Tamil Nadu chief minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami in Chennai.
Later on Monday, ministers of the ruling party held late night discussions and confirmed to reporters that they too were in favour of merger.