The FIR against AIADMK deputy general secretary TTV Dinakaran for allegedly bribing a middleman to get two leaves symbol allotted to his faction does not bode well for his jailed aunt V K Sasikala as a revolt looks imminent in her faction.
Coming after the cancellation of the crucial RK Nagar bypoll, reportedly on charges of voter bribery, voices against Sasikala and Dinakaran have gathered steam and could drive more MLAs and ministers to the opposing AIADMK faction led by former chief minister O Panneerselvam (OPS).
A senior leader in the OPS camp, wishing anonymity, said “things are moving at a breakneck speed. Dinakaran and Sasikala have been given an ultimatum to quit by their own supporters, many of whom are in touch with our leadership.”
The leader told HT on Monday that “this Delhi police case has surely come as an unexpected bonus. More AIADMK Sasikala faction people are now talking about unification to save the party”.
As soon as the news of bribery of former ECI officials by Dinakaran spread, rivals DMK stepped up the ante demanding that the AIADMK deputy general secretary be barred for life from electoral politics.
DMK spokesperson, A Sarvanan said it was for the first time in the history of electoral politics in Tamil Nadu that a politician has tried to bring “such disrepute to the high office of the election commission” and also to “political parties in Tamil Nadu”.
Dinakaran, however, has flatly denied the charge, saying he had nothing to do with the alleged bribery and asserted that he did not even know the person.
“No one from Delhi police has contacted me. I do not know the person who has been arrested by Delhi police. I will do everything legally needed to face the summons if they are served,” he told reporters in Chennai.
But Monday’s development has put the ruling clique represented by the Sasikala family under severe stress.
At least 12 ministers have asked her nephew to leave party posts. On Sunday night, more MLAs came out openly asking the Sasikala and Dinakaran duo to step down.