- The MLAs have been in the resort for six days now, a long holiday by any definition
- OPS, and much of the TN political establishment, has demanded their release
- Sasikala says they are there because there are threats to their lives on the outside
In what is the sixth day of the drama, some 129 MLAs of the Tamil Nadu Legislature continue to be ‘trapped’ in a resort on the outskirts of Chennai. In the mean time, the Madras High Court has ordered the police to verify their state, some have spoken to media channels declaring that they are fine and some ‘sources’ have told other channels that every one wants to leave and join OPS.
Whether or not they wish to join OPS, the desire to leave can be understandable. For five full days now they have been sitting a resort with no contact with the outside world. And there is only so much one can eat food and sleep, before the need to use a cell phone or watch TV overwhelms you.
And while Sasikala has been insisting that the resort trip is nothing to think about, the fact that the ‘holiday’ continues to extend is perhaps proof enough that something is going on.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvam apparently felt the same. Speaking to reporters on Sunday, he demanded that the 129 MLAs should be released and they should meet the people in their respective constituencies to get a sense of the public mood. Panneerselvam also alleged that by shedding crocodile tears, Sasikala had kept the MLAs on her side.
"Let her release them...So that they can go to their respective constituencies and meet the people and take a good decision," he told reporters here. Stressing that the Tamil people were well aware of the current political scenario, he said, "Not only in India, people across the globe are monitoring the situation."
Noting that he was working as per his conscience, Panneerselvam said he did not invite any of his Cabinet colleagues when he had gone to meditate at Amma's (Jayalalithaa) memorial last week after which he said he was forced to quit from the Chief Minister's post.
Asserting that he was always a staunch loyalist of Jayalalithaa, Panneerselvam said, "In the last 20 years not even once has Amma criticised me."
On whether the administration had come to a standstill due to the ongoing crisis, he said it was not true as he has been meeting government officials everyday. "Every day I am in touch with the officials. Day before yesterday, the Chief Secretary and DGP met me and we discussed several issues. Tomorrow, I'm going to the Secretariat," he said.
He said Deepak and Deepa, the niece of late leader J Jayalalithaa, were the only blood relations of Jayalalithaa. "When Amma's mortal remains were in the hospital on the night of December 5, she was not allowed to pay her respects even at that time," he alleged.
To a query on the assets of Jayalalithaa, he recalled it was her wish that all her assets go to the party. On a query as to how confident he was about forming the government, he said, "When the Assembly convenes, I will prove my majority there."
On the press conference addressed by AIADMK chief Sasikala, he asked why she did not meet the press when Jayalalithaa was hospitalised and why was she speaking to reporters now
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 6:36 PM