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EC gives AIADMK’s two leaves symbol to EPS-OPS camp

CM Palaniswami told reporters that their faction had provided all the necessary documents to the EC in the AIADMK symbol war.

india Updated: Nov 23, 2017 23:34 IST
Agencies
Agencies
Chennai
‪‪V. K. Sasikala‬,‪Edappadi K. Palaniswami‬,‪Election Commission of India‬
A man looking at a poster of a popular magazine displaying the picture of chief minister K Palaniswami and his rival-turned-ally O Panneerselvam on the AIADMK symbol in Chennai.(PTI FILE)

Tamil Nadu chief minister K Palaniswami said the Election Commission on Thursday alloted the AIADMK symbol -- ‘two leaves’ -- to his camp, in what could be another blow to the rival group led by jailed leader VK Saiskala and her nephew.

The poll panel too confirmed its decision later in the day. “...The petitioners group led by Shri E Madhusudhanan, O Panneerselvam and S Semmalai, and also supported presently by the impleading applicant Shri EK Palaniswami... enjoys support of majority of members, both in the organizational and legislature wings of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam,” the EC’s release said.

CM Palaniswami described the development as a “welcome step” and the happiest day for the party, news agency PTI reported. Palaniswami told reporters that their faction had provided all the necessary documents and affidavits to prove its claim.

“We are happy with the EC decision. We are waiting to get the full order,” former MP and party spokesperson KC Palaniswamy told IANS.

The ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) has been wracked by factional wars since the death of its matriarch and former CM J Jayalalithaa about a year ago.

Sasikala was one of the closest aides to the former CM and initially wrested control of the party before she was imprisoned for corruption.

After a bitter factional feud, O Panneerselvam, the man Sasikala ousted from the CM’s post, reunited with Palaniswami, the leader she put at the helm.

Sasikala, who is currently serving her term in a Bengaluru jail in a disproportionate assets case, and her nephew, TTV Dinakaran, were left out in the cold after the merger. Now, Sasikala’s nephew claims to head a camp of 18 legislators loyal to them.

The issue of AIADMK election symbol has been lingering since April in the aftermath of the announcement of by-poll to RK Nagar assembly constituency in Chennai.

However, the April 12 election was cancelled days ahead on allegations of use of money power and malpractices.

The EC had then frozen the AIADMK party name and its symbol after both factions staked claim.

First Published: Nov 23, 2017 14:42 IST