AIADMK calls for high-level meet; illegal, says OPS
In another twist, Panneerselvam’s name has been removed from the list of founders of party organ Puratchi Thalaivi Namadhu Amma.
CHENNAI/MADURAI: A few hours after a statement was issued by the AIADMK on Sunday calling for a meeting of headquarters office-bearers at its head office in Royapettah at 10 am on Monday, party coordinator O Panneerselvam issued another statement, calling the meeting a violation of bylaws and rules as such “meetings could be convened only with the approval of both coordinator and joint coordinator.” “I did not give permission for this meeting. Decisions taken at this meeting will not be binding on the AIADMK and its cadre... since the party is under the administration of the coordinator and joint coordinator.”
Some sources said decisions on party positions held by OPS are likely to be taken at the meeting. At least 74 top office-bearers may be eligible to take part in the meeting which comes against the backdrop of OPS’ assertion on Sunday that cadre are on his side and people and party workers would punish his detractors. After a fractious General Council (GC) meeting on Thursday in which party joint coordinator Edappadi K Palaniswamy demonstrated his support among office-bearers and OPS walked out after being booed and heckled, former law minister and EPS supporter CV Shanmugam on Friday said OPS is no longer the party coordinator as his election to the post was not ratified by the GC.
In another twist, Panneerselvam’s name has been removed from the list of founders of party organ Puratchi Thalaivi Namadhu Amma. Till Saturday, the paper carried the names of both EPS and OPS. Now, only Palaniswami has been listed as a founder.
Meanwhile, speaking in Madurai, former minister Sellur K Raju said as per AIADMK founder MG Ramachandran’s will (uyil sasanam), the leader of the party would be the one who has the backing of 80% of cadre. “Like MGR, Jayalalithaa, OPS and EPS, even a common worker can become the leader of the AIADMK. Can it happen in DMK? Does the DMK even follow the principles of democracy?” asked the legislator.
Another former AIADMK minister and Thirumangalam MLA RB Udhayakumar also said O Panneerselvam does not have the courage to lead the party and its cadre like EPS. “He (OPS) gave postings to his close aides instead of workers who truly served the party. Also, he also did not attend the party executive meeting despite several talks by senior leaders. No AIADMK leader in history has filed a police complaint to stop a GC meeting,” Udhayakumar said.
EPS, on the other hand, had the courage to recommend a special probe into the death of former CM J Jayalalithaa and convert her house into government property. “We want a trustworthy leader like EPS,” the minister said. “OPS heaping praises on MK Karunanidhi’s dialogues from the movie Parasakthi and his son Ravindranath Kumar lauding MK Stalin’s reign did not go down well with party workers,” Udhayakumar said.