Fight for 'justice' to continue, says Panneerselvam; Dinakaran to remain out

Last Updated: Wed, Apr 19, 2017 22:57 hrs
O. Panneerselvam's camp gets three MPs, one Minister

Chennai: Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam on Wednesday said the ouster of the rival AIADMK faction's two leaders -- V.K. Sasikala and her nephew T.T.V. Dinakaran - was the first victory in the "dharma yudh" and both factions would hold unification talks.

Dinakaran said that since everyone had decided to keep him out of the party affairs, he had decided to stay out.

Panneerselvam said the war for justice would continue "till the main goal is achieved".

His comments came a day after Tamil Nadu Finance Minister D. Jayakumar announced that AIADMK ministers had decided to keep jailed AIADMK General Secretary V.K. Sasikala and her nephew and party Deputy General Secretary Dinakaran and their family members out of the party.

Panneerselvam reiterated that AIADMK founder and former Chief Minister M.G. Ramachandran and his successor J. Jayalalithaa led the party as a movement of cadres.

He said that after Jayalalithaa died, the AIADMK had "gone into the hands" of Sasikala's family.

"The war for justice is to retrieve the party from the clutches of that family."

Panneerselvam said both factions would now hold talks for a merger of the AIADMK and a decision would be taken as per the wishes of party members.

On Tuesday night, Jayakumar said a committee will be formed to run the party.

Sasikala was elected the AIADMK General Secretary in December after Chief Minister Jayalalithaa died.

Earlier in the day, Dinakaran said that since everyone had decided to keep him out of the party affairs, he had decided to stay out.

He alleged state ministers have decided to keep him out of the party due to "some fear".

"Due to some unknown fear, the ministers have taken the decision," he remarked.

According to Dinakaran, those who are in public life should not have any fear.

Dinakaran said he would not take any hasty decision and added that he would not act in any way that could harm the party and the government.

"I don't have any expectations from the party or the government," Dinakaran added.

Queried about his resignation he said it was Sasikala who had appointed him as the Deputy General Secretary and he would resign his post only after discussing it with her.

In February, Sasikala before going to jail had inducted Dinakaran into the party and appointed him as the Deputy General Secretary.

In an attempt to enter the state assembly Dinakaran decided to contest from the R.K. Nagar assembly constituency where a by-poll was to be held on April 15.

The Election Commission had frozen the `two leaves' symbol of AIADMK due to competing claims from Sasikala and Panneerselvam.

A couple of days prior to the by-poll and on receipt of complaints of large scale distribution of cash to voters, the Income Tax Department raided the official residences of state Health Minister C. Vijayabaskar, his relatives, business associates, party officials and also the residence of actor-turned-politician Sarathkumar.

Around Rs 100 crore had been distributed by the Sasikala faction of AIADMK in R.K. Nagar.

The poll body then postponed the poll.

The Delhi Police on Monday registered a case against Dinakaran for allegedly attempting to bribe the Election Commission officials through a middleman to get a favourable verdict in the election symbol case.

Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker M. Thambidurai, speaking to a news channel in New Delhi on Wednesday, urged Dinakaran to respect the party's decision.

He said the families of Dinakaran and Sasikala had undergone sufferings and also contributed to the party's growth.

The AIADMK split into two after Jayalalithaa's death -- one faction is led by Sasikala and the other by Panneerselvam.

Majority of the legislators had lined behind Sasikala and her nominee E. Palaniswami was elected as the Chief Minister.

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