Senior AIADMK leaders M Thambidurai and D Jayakumar Thursday separately called on Tamil Nadu Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao, but insisted their meetings were not political. Thambidurai, also the Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha, said Rao was his “friend” and described the meeting as a “courtesy call,” while Finance Minister Jayakumar, who also holds Fisheries portfolio, discussed the issue of Vice-Chancellor’s appointment to the Tamil Nadu Fisheries University.
“There is no political significance in the meeting. We did not speak politics at all,” Thambidurai said when asked if he ‘apprised’ the Governor of the ongoing rumblings in the ruling AIADMK. Thambidurai said Rao has been his friend since the former was a minister in the AB Vajpayee cabinet in 1998-99.
“It was a courtesy call,” Thambidurai said, adding, he used to meet Rao, also Governor of Maharashtra, whenever he visited Mumbai. Thambidurai’s meeting with the Governor assumes significance as it came in the wake of changing dynamics in the ruling AIADMK where ministers in the V K Sasikala faction had revolted against their leader TTV Dhinakaran, deciding to keep his family away from the party.
They had also initiated the modalities of merging their faction headed by Chief Minister K Palaniswami with the other led by former Chief Minister O Pannerselvam. After meeting the Governor, Jayakumar said it was an official one.
“He is the Chancellor of the Fisheries University and I’m the Pro-Chancellor being the Fisheries Minister. I discussed with him the appointment of a V-C for the university,” he said.