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With Sasikala, Dinakaran's 'Ouster', EPS and OPS Camps Could Merge Into One

Deepa Balakrishnan, Poornima Murali deepab18

Updated: April 19, 2017, 8:09 AM IST
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With Sasikala, Dinakaran's 'Ouster', EPS and OPS Camps Could Merge Into One
File image of VK Sasikala and TTV Dinakaran.

Chennai: In a late night development on Tuesday, a senior Tamil Nadu minister informed the media that V K Sasikala is no more the AIADMK general secretary. He also informed that Sasikala's nephew TTV Dinakaran has also been ousted from all the posts that he held in the party.

"We have decided to delink TTV Dinakaran and his family from the party, a committee will run the party," said state finance minister D Jayakumar.

The minister claimed that twenty ministers within the government had ousted Sasikala and her family from the AIADMK "unanimously".

"We have to discuss things, we want unity and we must merge the party; there should be no division," Jayakumar said.

AIADMK leader and an O Panneerselvam loyalist C. Ponnaiyan told CNN-News18 that his camp (OPS) believed in a merger in total... "We want the general council to vote Sasikala out," he said.

Over the past few days, rumours were rife that the two factions - EPS camp and OPS camp - could iron out differences and merge to form a united AIADMK once again.

Tamil Nadu has witnessed a political battle between the two factions over the past several months, particularly after the death of the late CM J Jayalalithaa.

In the aftermath of Jayalalithaa's death, Sasikala is said to have sent 100-odd MLAs at the Koovathur Resort. However, the general secretary always maintained the MLAs were there on their own and not under duress. After more than ten days, the MLAs stepped out of the resort, but not until a government under Sasikala's leadership had already been formed.

It is said that when the MLAs returned to their respective constituencies, they faced their voters' anger, triggering the division within AIADMK and the factions claiming stake to Jayalalithaa's legacy.

The two factions kept criticising each other until last Friday when a few ministers raised concerns over Dinakaran's alleged involvement in bribing the Election Commission. The ministers demanded Dinakaran's resignation.

On Monday evening, O Panneerselvam addressed the media, hinting at a possible merger of two factions. However, the OPS camp has been unequivocally demanding that Sasikala and her family be ousted.

Panneerselvam's statement was welcomed by a few top ministers in the AIADMK on Monday night. However, the ministers kept mum over the role of Sasikala and Dinakaran, should the two factions merge.

First Published: April 18, 2017, 11:17 PM IST
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