- Since Jayalalithaa’s death AIADMK has been grappling with infighting
- Party member KC Palanisamy said what’s everyone has been afraid to accept – AIADMK has split three ways
- Party veterans are blaming new entrants (read Dhinakaran loyalists) for spoiling the party atmosphere
The AIADMK party just cannot understand where their loyalties lie. Jayalalithaa, Sasikala, Dhinakaran, O Panneerselvam, E Palanisamy have just become names that figure in the ripe centre of this political drama Tamil Nadu has been witnessing since former chief minister Jayalalithaa died last year. Now KC Palanisamy, a party member, says the party has been split three ways.
Two factions we were already aware of – O Panneerselvam and Sasikala’s (now includes Dhinakaran). Now an AIADMK party member has been quoted by IANS as saying that the AIADMK party has now split into three factions, in which, the third faction belongs to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E Palanisamy.
K.C. Palanisamy told IANS that the "blasphemous" utterings by some members who have joined the party in the recent past is affecting the party. He was referring to the recent interview given by Nanjil Sampath belonging to the Sasikala faction. "Sampath in an interview to a Tamil TV channel had said late J. Jayalalithaa committed the error of making O. Panneerselvam the Chief Minister twice," he said. "It is nothing but blasphemous.”
Palanisamy is of the opinion that there was no opposition to Panneerselvam's selection to the top post in the state then. "The utterings of people who have joined the AIADMK party in the recent times is affecting the party," Palanisamy said.
Even as the two AIADMK factions continue their talks, doubts have begun to emerge about the possible chances of reconciliation between the factions. The O Panneerselvam group is adamant that VK Sasikala and Dinakaran resign from their party positions. So far, this has proven to be unacceptable to the Edappadi camp. Moreover, OPS is adamant that financial control be taken away from the aunt-nephew duo, to strengthen the party.
At a time like this, when the party is looking to unite, accusations of this nature may prove detrimental and incite further anger. As is the case now.
A layman’s guide to AIADMK timeline since Jayalalithaa died
The saga began with OPS protesting his removal from the throne of chief minister. Sasikala, Amma’s friend and ‘heir’ declared OPS a traitor, wanted to become CM but could not become. After a dramatic coup, DA case and a jail term later, Sasikala appointed E Palanisamy as the chief minister to counter OPS.
Fight for CM throne over, then the tussle over who gets the AIADMK two-leaf symbol began. OPS wanted it for his party in the RK Nagar bypoll, E Palanisamy and TTV Dhinakaran wanted it for their party. The election commission froze the usage of the symbol as well as the use of the name AIADMK as one party. So now both parties have different party symbols and different party names. The infighting grew bigger and bigger and finally the EC had to cancel the RK Nagar bypolls.
Then TTV Dhinakaran was arrested for the poll symbol fracas and then OPS and Palanisamy decided to pat each other’s back, but then things are just getting murkier from there on. No consensus reached. Merger talks are still on.
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 6:53 PM IST