One Minister and 4 MPs come out in support of O Pannerselvam
Chennai sources have stated that in a dramatic turn to the ongoing political turmoil in Tamilnadu, two prominent members from AIADMK interim general secretary V.K.Sasikala’s camp Education K.Pandiarajan and party spokesperson C.Ponnaiyan had switched sides on Saturday to join Chief Minister O. Pannerselvam, citing a grounds well of support for the latter. Meanwhile in a further boost to the rebel camp, four MPs P.R.Sundaram from Namakkal, K.Ashok Kumar from Krishnagiri, R.Vanaroja from Tiruvannamalai and V.Sathyabama from Tirupur had also come out in support of Mr. Pannerselvam.
Sources have added that the senior AIADMK Leader, who had also earlier backed Ms. Sasikala had challenged her nomination as the party’s general secretary. According to AIADMK rules, only party cadre can select the general secretary. MLAs are the people’s representatives and they must feed from their constituents. During the day, former AIADMK MLA Manoj Pandian had also announced that the lawyer’s wing of the AIADMK had extended its support to Mr. Pannerselvam.
O Panneerselvam on Monday left for the state secretariat, to reassume duties as the CM. Before leaving for the secretariat, the caretaker CM offered prayers and met supporters at his residence. Police personnel have been deputed in large numbers outside the secretariat. Panneerselvam now has 7 out of 134 AIADMK MLAs on his side, in his ongoing power struggle with party general secretary Sasikala Natarajan. 11 MPs have also provided support to OPS.
Meanwhile, DMK working president MK Stalin also arrived at the Tamil Nadu secretariat on Monday. OPS on Sunday said the 129 MLAs, staying in a private resort near Chennai, should be ‘released’ and they should meet people in their respective constituencies to get a sense of the public mood. He said Sasikala should release the legislators from the resort and allow them to meet the people. Panneerselvam also alleged that by shedding crocodile tears, Sasikala kept the MLAs on her side.
“Let her release them…so that they can go to their respective consitutencies and meet the people and take a good decision,” he told reporters in Chennai. Stressing that the Tamil people were well aware of the current political scenario, he said, “Not only in India, people across the globe are monitoring the situation.”