AIADMK merger Highlights | OPS, EPS factions unlikely to make announcement as no consensus on deal
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AIADMK merger Highlights | OPS, EPS factions unlikely to make announcement as no consensus on deal

The ruling party in Tamil Nadu split in February, two months after its supremo and chief minister J Jayalalithaa died. Two factions emerged: one led by O Panneerselvam, and another by EK Palaniswami that was seemingly in favour of VK Sasikala, the late CM’s confidante.

india Updated: Aug 18, 2017 21:46 IST
KV Lakshmana
KV Lakshmana
Hindustan Times, Chennai
Chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami at Jayalalithaa’s memorial on Marina beach in Chennai in February 2017. The memorial has become a venue of political importance (HT File Photo)

The AIADMK factions seemed to inch closer to deal on Friday after chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami accepted most of the rebel camp’s demands – led by O Panneerselvam – including a judicial investigation into the death of party supremo J Jayalalithaa last December.

Sources said an announcement on the merger was expected late on Friday evening, but by night, both factions remained deep in discussions over the same.

Palaniswami – also known by his initials EPS – and his predecessor, rebel leader O Panneerselvam – known as OPS – were expected to meet to formalise a unification deal that would include a power-sharing formula.

Live updates:

9:40pm: Merger announcement unlikely as both factions yet to arrive at a consensus.

9:20pm: Senior party leaders of the OPS faction say KP Munusamy and M Pandian are blocking merger since VK Sasikala continues to remain the party’s general secretary.

9:10pm: After four hours of meetings, no consensus yet on merger deal.

9:08pm: Meeting at Panneerselvam’s residence ends. To address media shortly.

8:25pm: Talks on at Panneerselvam’s residence. Former ministers KP Munusamy, K Panidarajan and other MLAs and MPs present. OPS has the support of 10 MLAs and about a dozen MPs.

8:15pm: Chief minister Palaniswami in meeting with Cabinet colleagues to deliberate on details of merger.

8:02pm: Sources say discussions are on over ministerial berths, but a consensus is yet to be reached.

7:57pm: Supporters gather at OPS’ residence.

7:52pm: Several state ministers make their way to Marina beach.

7:40pm: Party members of both factions arriving at AIADMK headquarters in Roypettah.

7:30pm: People begin gathering at the memorial.

7:15pm: O Panneerselvam and EK Palanswami expected to visit Jaya memorial on Marina beach shortly.

7pm: Security has been stepped up at Jaya Memorial on Marina beach, triggering speculation of an announcement. This was where O Panneerselvam started the revolt against Jayalalithaa’s long-time friend VK Sasikala on February 7 that split lead to the party split.

First Published: Aug 18, 2017 19:49 IST