CHENNAI: The AIADMK (Amma) led by Chief Minister ‘Edappadi’ K Palaniswami on Thursday took the first concrete step towards merger by declaring the re-admission of TTV Dhinakaran into AIADMK after a gap of five years on February 14 and his appointment as the deputy general secretary of the party as violative of party rules. By this move, the ruling faction has virtually ousted Dhinakaran from the party. The ruling faction said the recent appointments by Dhinakaran are invalid and they will not be binding on any of the cadre and requested them to reject these appointments.
A resolution to this effect was adopted at a meeting chaired by Palaniswami and senior office bearers at the party headquarters. The resolution copy was not signed by KA Sengottaiyan and Dindigul Srinivasan who were appointed by VK Sasikala as presidium chairman and treasurer.
Further, the cautiously worded resolution, typed in the letterpad of AIADMK said, after the demise of late CM J Jayalalithaa, VK Sasikala was appointed as general secretary as per the rules of the party. But due to an extraordinary situation, she is not able to discharge her duties. Further, many have approached the Election Commission to nullify her appointment.
“Following this, as per rule 20 (v) of the AIADMK, the office bearers appointed by Jayalalithaa have been guiding the affairs of party and government.” As such, the AIADMK (Amma) indicated that E Madhusudanan who was appointed by Jayalalithaa as the presidium chairman of the AIADMK and O Panneerselvam as the treasurer could continue in their posts if merger takes place.
The resolution said the re-admission of Dhinakaran and his appointment as deputy general secretary was violative of party rules since he had not been a member of the party for five consecutive years. Further, the EC had rejected Dhinakaran’s letter on March 3 after his ‘appointment’ as deputy general secretary.
The resolution also hinted at another possibility that might become a reality after the merger. “We, the party cadre are duty bound to stand united to fulfill the ideals of Amma.
The party cadre will not see anyone else as party general secretary since they believe Amma is the permanent general secretary.” By saying that, it indicated that the post of general secretary may not be there in the future.
Reacting to this development, Panneerselvam said, “AIADMK (Amma) has brought in the views expressed by us during the dharma yuddham in the form of a resolution. In a nutshell, they have come half way through. Let them come across and we will see.”
Responding to a question, Panneerselvam said, “If the two factions merge, it will be the wish of the grassroots level cadre and the people of Tamil Nadu.” KP Munusamy, a leader from the AIADMK (Puratchi Thalaivi Amma) said, “They have just woken up to our demands. Let us see whether they move in the same direction.”
Meanwhile, reacting to resolution adopted by AIADMK (Amma) leaders in Chennai, Dhinakaran, speaking to mediapersons at Thanjavur, took potshots at Palaniswami and his party colleagues, saying that they were desperate to do anything to cling on to power. Dhinakaran also said he had the powers to take action against anyone who acted against the interest of the party and Palaniswami would not be an exception for that.
On the contention of the resolution that his appointment as deputy general secretary was violative of rules, Dhinakaran quipped: “If Dindigul C Sreenivasan appointed by VK Sasikala could discharge his duties as treasurer, why not me ?” He further said through the resolution, EPS and others had accepted that Sasikala was appointed as per the rules of the party.
“The party rules state that only for the posts filled through election like general secretary, district secretary, union secretary and branch level secretary, the contestants should have been as a member for five years. This rule does not apply for nominated posts like deputy general secretary, headquarters secretary. They are intentionally misinterpreting the party rules to suit their aim,” he charged.
Alleging that the resolution was aimed at misleading the party cadre, Dhinakaran said, no one could cow down him and he would continue to address party meetings as scheduled on August 14. “Only the general secretary (Sasikala) who nominated me, can stop me.”
Later on Thursday Palaniswami and Panneerselvam airdashed to Delhi for the swearing-in ceremony of M Venkaiah Naidu as the next Vice President of India. Both are likely to meet PM Narendra Modi. During the past two visits to Delhi, Palaniswami and Panneerselvam did not meet. This time, they may break the ice.