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Palaniswami camp keeps door open for AIADMK merger, OPS faction firm in opposing govt

The Panneerselvam camp has been maintaining that a patch-up was not possible.

india Updated: Aug 08, 2017 23:46 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, Chennai
AIADMK,K Palaniswami,O Panneerselvam
AIADMK senior leader and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami during a meeting with ministers and party's senior leaders at party's headquarters in Chennai on August 1, 2017. (PTI)

The AIADMK camp led by Chief Minister K Palaniswami continues to keep its doors open for the rebel leader O Panneerselvam-led faction to facilitate a rapprochement.

The former chief minister-led camp is, however, firm in opposing the government even as sidelined deputy general secretary TTV Dhinakaran continues to strengthen his support base within the AIADMK by meeting party functionaries.

“It is my humble request that we (AIADMK factions) should be united and not give room for others to mock or criticise Amma’s (J Jayalalithaa’s) government led by Chief Minister K Palaniswami,” Finance Minister and senior Amma faction leader D Jayakumar said on Tuesday.

Disagreeing with his view, senior Panneerselvam faction leader KP Munusamy said the incumbent regime was not Amma’s government.

“Had it been the real Amma’s government there would not have been a split or announcement for a protest,” he told reporters here.

The Panneerselvam-led faction had announced a protest demonstration on August 10 here on various issues faced by the people. However, it has now been deferred to a later date, tentatively August 18.

Munusamy, who was a minister in late Jayalalithaa’s 2011-16 regime, said opposition parties “should not mock at this government which was ushered in by Amma and people should not weep... that is why we have announced a protest.”

The Panneerselvam camp has been maintaining that a patch-up was not possible.

Panneerselvam had on June 11 disbanded a seven-member party (AIADMK-Puratchi Thalaivi Amma) to facilitate a merger with the ruling AIADMK (Amma) faction.

AIADMK comprises factions led by chief minister Palaniswami, rebel leader Panneeerselvam and party deputy general secretary TTV Dhinakaran.

Meanwhile, several functionaries who were days ago appointed by Dhinakaran continued to call on him at his residence here, reassuring him of their support.

When Dhinakaran made the appointments on August 4, the Palaniswami camp had questioned the move and the Panneerselvam faction had kept aloof, saying “Dhinakaran is an outsider” and hence it did not matter.

Dhinakaran loyalist and sitting MLA Thanga Tamilselvan, to a question, said those who opposed (minister Jayakumar and others) the present appointments were themselves appointed by party general secretary VK Sasikala.

He demanded to know why they have not come forward to quit such party posts.

He said according to the plan, Dhinakaran would begin his state-wide tour from Madurai District on August 14.

On August 7, Palaniswami had said he expected to see the much-anticipated but delayed merger of the factions “soon.”

First Published: Aug 08, 2017 22:46 IST