OPS’ remarks on Sasikala triggers row in AIADMK

Chennai: Former Tamilnadu Chief Minister and coordinator of the Opposition AIADMK O Panneerselvam has said any decision on reinducting ousted leader V K Sasikala into the party would be taken by the top office-bearers of the party.

Asked about reports of Sasikala, claiming herself as the general secretary of the party and calling for strengthening the AIADMK, Panneerselvam said top office-bearers of the party will discuss and take a decision on re-inducting her into the party.

‘Anyone can come into politics. But it was people’s wish to accept them”, Panneerselvam, said, adding, the party has been functioning under the leadership of the coordinator and joint coordinator.

Sasikala, the former close aide of late J Jayalalithaa, was earlier appointed as interim general secretary of the party, but was expelled after the warring AIADMK factions merged in August 2017.

Panneerselvam’s remarks appeared to be contradictory to the stand adopted by former CM and AIADMK joint coordinator Edappadi K Palaniswami, who had been asserting that there was no room for the ousted interim general secretary in the party.

Palaniswami had been stating that the questiong of readmitting Sasikala into the AIADMK did not arise as she was not a member of the party.

He also took objections to Sasikala using the AIADMK flag and unveiling a plaque at the memorial house of late leader MGR in the capacity as general secretary of the party.

Reacting to Panneerselvam’s remarks, former Minister and senior party leader D Jayakumar said he would like to remind to OPS that it was him (Panneerselvam) who stood against Sasikala.

It may be recalled that it was Panneerselvam who openly opposed Sasikala after the death of J Jayallaithaa in February 2017 by launching a dharmayudh against her, stating that he was forced to resign from the
Chief Minister’s post by her.

The revolt by Paneerselvam led to a split in the party and Palaniswami became the Chief Minister.

However, after Sasikala’s aspirations to become Chief Minister was shattered when a Special Court sentenced her to four years imprisonment in DA case, the warring factions of the AIADMK headed by Panneerselvam
and Palaniswami merged and Sasikala was sacked from the party.


NT Bureau