CHENNAI: A day after the establishment and rebel factions of the ruling AIADMK came together, the 19 insurgent MLAs who have been rallying around ousted deputy general secretary TTV Dhinakaran informed Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao on Tuesday that they had withdrawn support to Chief Minister ‘Edappadi’ K Palaniswami due to rampant corruption in the government.
The MLAs clarified that they did not want to bring down the government but only sought to change the incumbent Chief Minister. In a striking reminder of the Koovathur episode that brought Palaniswami to power six months ago, they then left for neighbouring Puducherry, where they are holed up at a resort.
Meanwhile, facing the prospect of his sister, interim secretary VK Sasikala, being expelled from the party by former loyalists, VK Dhivaharan proposed the name of Assembly Speaker P Dhanapal as the next Chief Minister.
He said the new Cabinet should be formed without Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam, and few other “corrupt” ministers. Dhanapal was not available for comment.
In Chennai, Dhinakaran, as deputy general secretary, expelled senior leader R Vaithilingam, organising secretary and Rajya Sabha member, for ‘anti-party activities’. It was Vaithilingam who announced on Monday that Sasikala would soon be removed as general secretary by convening the general council.
Retaliating, Vaithilingam told Express that the party had unanimously adopted a resolution pointing out that Dhinakaran’s appointment as deputy general secretary was violative of bylaws. “As such, he has no powers to expel anyone in the party. If he issues any such statement, it will not be binding on us,” he said.