Sasikala clan sends feelers to DMK, party chief Stalin weighing options

While ousted deputy general secretary T T V Dhinakaran is treading cautiously, Sasikala’s brother V K Dhivakaran appears to be bent on teaching a lesson to the ruling group.

Published: 29th August 2017 07:37 AM  |   Last Updated: 29th August 2017 12:24 PM   |  A+A-

Chief Minister Edapaddi K Palaniswami leaves after a meeting at the party headquarters in the city on Monday | D SAMPATHKUMAR

Express News Service

CHENNAI: With the volatile political situation prevailing in the State taking twists and turns by the day, the DMK seems to have been caught in a dilemma over deciding its future course of action.

The crisis in the AIADMK is seemingly deepening, with a sizable number of MLAs skipping the crucial meeting of office-bearers and legislators held at the party’s headquarters on Monday.

Angry over the move of the faction led by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami to push interim general secretary V K Sasikala’s family into political wilderness forever through a resolution at the general council meeting, the rebels are mulling various options to trouble the government.

However, it is learnt that the family is divided on taking a call on unseating the Palaniswami government.

While Sasikala’s nephew and ousted deputy general secretary T T V Dhinakaran is treading cautiously, her brother V K Dhivakaran, appears to be bent on teaching a lesson to Palaniswami and his compatriots.

Sources said they have opened a window of communication with DMK leadership and many rounds of exchanges were held in the recent days. “Dhivakaran has offered support from outside in the event of our party forming a government,” said a source in DMK.

Sniffing backroom negotiations, senior BJP leader and Rajya Sabha member Subramanian Swamy on Sunday tweeted that Stalin and Dhinakaran would form a coalition government. When asked for a response, Dhinakaran did not deny Swamy’s statement, only stating that it could be the view of Swamy whom he respects.

However, the party’s working president M K Stalin is reluctant to accept the support from an AIADMK splinter group, though an influential person in the family is not averse to the idea.

When questioned whether the DMK would take the support from Dhinakaran faction, the party’s organisation secretary and Rajya Sabha member R S Bharathi said his party would prefer to go to polls, instead of entertaining anybody. “We are not going to entertain anybody. We want to come to power by means of elections,” he told Express. Bharathi also pointed at Stalin’s statement that he did not want to attain power through the backdoor.

However, political observers are not ready to rule out the possibility of Dhinakaran faction joining hands with the DMK, if the terms of agreement are to pull down the government and call for fresh elections. “If the terms of agreement between them are pulling down the government and calling for fresh elections, then none is going to mistake them,” said Dr Ramu Manivannan, head of the Department of Politics and Public Administration, University of Madras.

He added the EPS faction of the AIADMK and the BJP may cry foul over collusion among Sasikala, Dhinakaran and Stalin in case the government is unseated, but the people are fed up with the government as it seldom functions. “The government no longer represents the people. They are fed up with it. So they would like to see the government go,” Manivannan claimed.

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