Amid hectic political developments in Tamil Nadu, the Election Commission on Friday granted time till June 16 to rival factions of AIADMK to submit more documents and details in connection to the row surrounding the party’s poll symbol.
Last month, the Election Commission had issued an interim order freezing the ‘two leaves’ symbol of AIADMK, saying both the factions cannot use the party symbol as well as its name for the R K Nagar assembly bypoll that was scheduled for April 12. However, the bypoll, necessitated following the death of chief minister J Jayalalithaa in December, was cancelled amid allegations of bribing of voters.
Both the factions, meanwhile, look set for a merger though a war of words has erupted between them in their bid to gain the upper hand in sealing the deal. Panneerselvam, who leads (AIADMK-Puratchi Thalaivi Amma) group, had described the ouster of TTV Dinakaran and his aunt VK Sasikala as his first victory in the effort to save the party after the ruling faction, headed by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, agreed to the former CMs’ demand. Panneerselvam had maintained a strong stand, demanding the expulsion of the party’s general secretary Sasikala and her nephew Dinakaran from the party in order to see any chances of joining forces with the rival faction.
Dinakaran was ousted from the party after he was booked by Delhi Police for allegedly trying to bribe an Election Commission official through a middleman to obtain the party’s two-leaves poll symbol ahead of the bypoll to R K Nagar assembly seat.
However, minister D Jayakumar had said the decision to keep Sasikala’s family away was taken for the party’s future, not because of pressure from Panneerselvam. The two conditions set out by the Panneerselvam faction to the ruling group were the withdrawal of the affidavits filed with the Election Commission declaring Sasikala and Dinakaran as general secretary and deputy general secretary and a CBI probe into the death of Jayalalithaa.
With inputs from ANI