Dinakaran hints at quitting party post

EPS Camp Moves Closer to OPS Welcomes Offer to Merge

In a shocking turn of political developments, AIADMK general secretary VK Sasikala, who is convicted in DA case and serving her sentence in Bengaluru jail, has been suspended from the party.

A day after Tamil Nadu ministers announced their decision to oust him and his family members from the party+, AIADMK (Amma) faction deputy general secretary TTV Dhinakaran on Wednesday said he distanced himself from the party on Tuesday itself.

AIADMK's Deputy General Secretary T.T.V. Dinakaran on Wednesday said the state ministers have made a decision to keep him out of the party due to some fear. Dhinakaran told reporters on Wednesday "I am not looking for (personal) benefits".

Getting a green signal from Panneerselvam that he was ready for a merger provided Dinakaran and his jailed aunt Sasikala were kept out of the party, chief minister Edappadi Palaniswami went into a huddle with senior cabinet colleagues and they chose to accept the demand. One of the pre-conditions for the merger of the OPS and EPS factions was that Dinakaran and Sasikala be kept away from the party.

The police had earlier arrested a middleman named Sukash Chandrasekar, who was allegedly trying to fix a deal with Election Commission officials to get the Dinakaran faction the "two-leaves" party symbol.

On Tuesday night, it looked like the AIADMK had split three ways, with Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami, retaining the largest number of MLAs, booting out TTV Dhinakaran and Sasikala from the party.

Earlier, the speculation of merger of two warring factions in the Tamil Nadu Government, the Sasikala and the O. Panneerselvam groups of the AIADMK was rife.

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"The party and government should not be in the hands of a family. Our demand for a probe into the hospitalisation and demise of Jayalalithaa has to be met by the Government", Panneerselvam told reporters at his residence in Chennai.

Though the Palaniswami and Panneerselvam camps have shown inclination for the merger of the two factions, there have not been any direct talks between them so far.

"During the election campaigning in R.K. Nagar, many malpractices were done and Rs. 4000 were offered to each voter".

He claimed it was the desire of all party cadres, top functionaries, district secretaries, MPs, MLAs, and the ministers.

The former chief minister claimed that Sasikala was appointed General Secretary following Jayalalithaa's death in "contravention" of party laws as a chief has to be elected.

He said they need not have gone public with their revolt against him and said " Had they asked me, I would have resigned".

Putting up a fearless face, he said he will tackle the situation."They can maximum put me behind bars".

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