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2-min read

No One Can Threaten Me, Jayalalithaa Raised Me Strong, Says Panneerselvam

Tamil Nadu’s ‘caretaker’ Chief Minister O Panneerselvam has thrown an open challenge to CM-designate VK Sasikala saying he is in touch with many AIADMK legislators and told Network18 in an exclusive interview that he didn’t really have any doubts about the death of J Jayalalithaa, but ordered a probe to clear the air.

News18.com

Updated:February 9, 2017, 9:51 AM IST
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New Delhi: Tamil Nadu’s ‘caretaker’ Chief Minister O Panneerselvam has thrown an open challenge to CM-designate VK Sasikala saying he is in touch with many AIADMK legislators and told Network18 in an exclusive interview that he didn’t really have any doubts about the death of J Jayalalithaa, but ordered a probe to clear the air.

Talking exclusively to Network18 Senior Editor S Gunasekaran, Panneerselvam said no one could threaten him, but the fact was he was forced to resign.

ALSO READ: In This Chennai Potboiler, Focus is On Chinnamma's 'Conflict of Interest'

“I never thought of speaking to media, but the situation made me to do so,” he said, adding that it was up to the Governor to decide about revoking his resignation letter as CM.

Panneerselvam had resigned as CM on Sunday after an AIADMK legislature party meeting nominated Sasikala as the new legislative party leader. However, he raised a banner of revolt on Tuesday night, staking his claim to be the successor to Jayalalithaa.

“There is no question that my tenure as CM is interim. AIADMK legislators will take right decision for sure. Many are in touch with me,” he said.

Rubbishing Sasikala’s claim in an earlier interview to Network18 that Panneerselvam’s friendship with MLAs of Opposition DMK had raised suspicion in the party, he said: “When DMK legislators were dear to me during the assembly session, there was no compulsion aroused to oppose them.”

ALSO READ: ‘Panneerselvam is Disgracing Amma’s Memory. That is What Pains Me’

“It was Jayalalithaa who raised me strong,” he said.

Governor Vidyasagar Rao is expected to reach Chennai on Thursday and is likely to meet the rival camps. Sources told CNN-News18 that AIADMK MLAs had secured a 2:30pm appointment with the Governor and were likely to meet him in Mahabalipuram.

ALSO READ: BJP Leaders Pulling Strings in AIADMK Political Crisis, Says Subramanian Swamy

Rao had kept away from Chennai for the last three days triggering speculation whether he had reservations on swearing-in Sasikala.

On Wednesday, Sasikala appeared to be having majority of MLAs with her, a day after the revolt by Panneerselvam who claimed that they will back him in the trial of strength in Tamil Nadu Assembly.

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| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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