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AIADMK merger highlights: Upset Dhinakaran group to meet Tamil Nadu Governor tomorrow

AIADMK merger live updates: AIADMK factions led by Chief Minister Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam announced their merger on Monday. O Panneerselvam will be the Deputy Chief Minister. An eleven-member coordination committee will run the party.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: August 21, 2017 10:27:19 pm
aiadmk merger, aiadmk merger news, aiadmk merger live updates, OPS, panneerselvam, EPS, palaniswami, sasikala, TTV dinakaran, Jayalalitha, All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, tamil nadu politics, AIADMK news, india news, indian express, latest news Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami greeting O Panneerselvam after he was sworn-in as Deputy Chief Minister in the presence of Governor CH Vidyasagar Rao at Raj Bhavan in Chennai on Monday. PTI Photo

The two rival factions of AIADMK led by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam announced their merger on Monday in their party headquarters. Upset over their isolation, the AIADMK group headed by TTV Dhinakaran will meet Tamil Nadu Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao on Tuesday and discuss the latest developments that led to the merger. Though Dhinakaran, who was stated to be not well, himself maintained silence, over a dozen MLAs owing allegience to him meditated at Jayalaliathaa’s memorial and later announced they will meet the Governor.

Steps will be taken to remove AIADMK general secretary V K Sasikala by convening the general council meeting, senior party leader and Rajya Sabha MP R Vaithilingam on Monday said. Vaithilingam, a leader of the Palaniswami camp, addressing the merger meet at the party headquarters in Chennai, said measures will be initiated soon to remove Sasikala.

READ | AIADMK rival factions announce merger: A timeline of events (Click here)

The merger talks began gaining momentum after Palaniswami agreed to some of the demands put forth by Panneerselvam. The Chief Minister set up an inquiry commission to probe the death of J Jayalalithaa and announced that her Poes Garden residence, Ved Nilayam, would soon be converted into a memorial. However, no decision was taken on the demand of a CBI probe in the late chief minister’s death. Click here to read in Tamil

READ | AIADMK factions announce merger: Edappadi Palaniswami, O Panneerselvam come together (Click here)

AIADMK merger highlights:

09.15 pm: Upset over their isolation, the AIADMK group headed by TTV Dhinakaran will meet Tamil Nadu Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao on Tuesday and discuss the latest developments that led to the merger. “Tamil Nadu Governor has given us appointment at 10 am tomorrow. We’ll discuss the issue with him,” says P Vetrivel, Dhinakaran supporter

08.55 pm: MLAs supporting TTV Dhinakaran pay tributes to former CM Jayalalithaa at her Marina Beach memorial

08.30 pm: MLAs supporting TTV Dhinakaran reach the memorial of former Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa at Marina Beach in Chennai

08.20 pm: Reacting to the merger, DMK’s Durai Murugan says, “They just had the merger, we will wait and see.”

08.15 pm: Watch to know everything on the AIADMK merger

08.00 pm: CPI(M) politburo member Prakash Karat termed the merger of AIADMK factions as opportunistic and alleged that the BJP was behind it. He said, “The opportunistic decision by the two factions, at the behest of BJP. will be rejected by the people of Tamil Nadu.”

07.30 pm: The merger of two AIADMK factions would in no way be beneficial to the people of Tamil Nadu, said DMK MP and the party’s women’s wing leader Kanimozhi.

07.00 pm: After taking oath, O Panneerselvam said, “Merger brought tremendous joy to lakhs of party followers. I share the same joy.”

06.45 pm: Prime Minister Narendra Modi took to Twitter congratulating O Panneerselvam. He tweeted, “I congratulate Thiru O Panneerselvam & others who took oath today. I hope Tamil Nadu scales newer heights of progress in the years to come.”

06.30 pm: Speaking on the merger, V Pugalendi of TTV Dhinakaran & Sasikala faction says, “It’s an act of making fool of people and party cadre. Been saying that this govt is most corrupt”

06.20 pm: Golden day in the history of AIADMK. All cadres and leaders are happy. No disappointment for me. Bad time begins for TTV Dhinakaran. Whoever thinks bad for Amma’s govt will be ousted, says D Jayakumar

06.15 pm: Obstacle has been removed, two-factions of the party have been united again, says V. Maitreyan

06.00 pm: General body meeting must be immediately convened and the secretary must be removed, says KP Munusamy

05.30 pm: E Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam shake hands after latter’s oath-taking ceremony at Raj Bhawan

05.15 pm: O Panneerselvam takes oath as Deputy Chief Minister

05.00 pm: Speaking post the merger of both the factions of the AIADMK, CR Saraswathi of TTV Dhinakaran-VK Sasikala faction says, “We are happy with the merger but billion dollar question is why are they avoiding us?”

04.30 pm: Tamil Nadu CM E.Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam pay tribute to former CM Jayalalithaa at her Marina Beach memorial

04.00 pm: Panneerselvam has been allotted Finance, a portfolio held by D Jeyakumar, besides Housing, Rural Housing and Housing Development, Slum Clearance Board and Accommodation Control, Town Planning, Urban Development and CMDA hitherto held by Udumalai K Radhakrishnan. Jayakumar also holds the Fisheries portfolio and that remains with him. Pandiarajan has been given Tamil Official Language and Tamil culture, besides Archaelogy, hitherto held by Sevoor S Ramachandran and K A Sengottaiyan, respectively.

03.55 pm: CM E Palaniswami arrives at Jayalalithaa’s memorial at Marina Beach, Chennai to pay tributes to her post the merger of both the factions of AIADMK

03.50 pm: Amma’s blessings and wishes of party cadres made it possible. Thank CM E Palaniswami and leaders of his faction, says O Panneerselvam

03.45 pm: Sasikala will be removed from the post of AIADMK General Secretary soon: RS MP Vaithilingam

03.30 pm: O Panneerselvam will be the Deputy Chief Minister and will have portfolio of Finance under him. An eleven-member coordination committee will run the party. The swearing in will take place today at 4.30 pm.

03.25 pm: Had few difficulties in recent times, similar to what happened after MGR’s demise, but both OPS & EPS came forward to unite party, says KP Munusamy

03.20 pm: Speaking at the head office, E Palaniswami says, “Our first priority will be to retrieve the two leaves symbol. We will fulfill all the promises made by Amma. Amma has said before that after me AIADMK will last over 100 years. We all will make sure it happens”

03.15 pm: O Panneerselvam will be convener änd K. P. Munusamy will be deputy co-convener for the AIADMK party, says TN CM E Palaniswami moments after merger

03.10 pm:  CM Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam shake hands in the party head office. Addressing to party members, he says, “This moment onwards, we will work towards fulfilling Amma’s dreams. We are fulfilling the dreams of crores of cadres and doing this merger.”

03.00 pm: Visuals from inside the party head office

02.55 pm: O Panneerselvam and Tamil Nadu CM Edappadi K Palaniswami have reached AIADMK party head office

2.50 pm: Tamil Nadu CM Edappadi K Palaniswami arrives at AIADMK party head office

2.45 pm: Meanwhile, Kamal Haasan expressed his anger against the AIADMK merger, called for an uprising of the Tamil people

2:28 pm:

aiadmk merger, aiadmk merger news, aiadmk merger live updates, OPS, panneerselvam, EPS, palaniswami, sasikala, TTV dinakaran, tamil nadu politics, AIADMK news OPS has started for party headquarters (Source: ANI)

2:27 pm:

2:20 pm:

2: 10 pm: The Pannerselvam faction wanted EPS camp to issue a statement promising legal steps that will be taken to remove Sasikala. However, no such statement has been issued by the ruling AIADMK camp. Reports also suggest that EPS supporters are worried looking at the strength of T.T.V Dhinakaran. Dhinakaran, the nephew of Sasikala claims to now have 18 MLAs in his support. The leader also claims that three more independent MLAs will join in his support by the end of the day. Supporters of Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami fear that Dhinakaran will topple the government in case he gets majority. However, the ruling faction says that the issue will be resolved and that the merger will happen.

2:04 pm: BJP president Amit Shah’s three-day visit to Tamil Nadu scheduled from 22 August, has been cancelled. Shah postponed his visit following a meeting of NDA chief ministers in Delhi today and his subsequent required presence in various other important meetings, BJP State unit president Tamilisai Sounderrajan said. The new schedule for his visit would be announced later, she added. Read: Amit Shah’s three-day visit to Tamil Nadu gets postponed again. Click here

1:45 pm: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami has cancelled his scheduled visit to AIADMK party head office, for now as reported by ANI.

1:36 pm: 17 supporters of T.T.V Dhinakaran are at his Besant Nagar residence.

1:15 pm: OPS is also expected to visit former chief minister J. Jayalalithaa’s memorial at Marina Beach from the party headquarters after the meeting is done.

1:00 pm: Reports also suggest that instead of removing Sasikala, which is one of the key demands raised by the OPS camp, a convincing statement may be issued against her ahead of the AIADMK merger.

12:40 pm: The Palaniswami faction had declared the appointment of Dhinakaran, as Deputy General Secretary as “improper, unacceptable and invalid”. Dhinakaran who is reportedly against the merger, on Friday said he had the support of many more MLAs who are “like sleeper cells” until the time comes to activate them. Indicating that he would choose the party over the government, Dhinakaran said that those in power were taking decisions for their own interests. “We will take a decision as per the wishes of cadres. What is happening now (in the ruling faction) is against the wishes of cadres,” he said. Read| AIADMK merger: O Panneerselvam says positive result in a day or two; top developments. Click here

12:30 pm: T.T.V. Dhinakaran, Sasikala’s nephew, however, can be a game changer in the merger and the government  ahead in Tamil Nadu. In case Dhinakaran gets more than 17 MLAs on his side, the EPS government will become a minority in terms of strength. At present 16 out of 20 MLAs have reached his residence. Sources from both OPS and EPS camps said they feared Dhinakaran would topple the government if the merger happened.

12:20 pm: According to sources who spoke to the Indian Express, preparations are on for a likely swearing-in ceremony of OPS as Deputy Chief Minister. Two more ministers from his camp are also likely to be sworn-in today at 3.30 pm

11:40 am: Amid the ongoing talks of AIADMK merger, party MLAs and workers reached the party headquarters in Chennai. Both the camps will likely take a decision on the expulsion of V K Sasikala from the party during the meeting.

aiadmk merger, aiadmk merger news, aiadmk merger live updates, OPS, panneerselvam, EPS, palaniswami, sasikala, TTV dinakaran, tamil nadu politics, AIADMK news Members from the party reach the headquarters for a meeting. (Source: ANI)

11:20 am: According to a report in IANS, as per AIADMK party bylaws, the General Secretary cannot be removed by a resolution passed by a committee. In order to overcome this hurdle,  party sources suggest that one of the moves that is being contemplated is to abolish the post of General Secretary on the pretext that late Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa will be the party’s permanent General Secretary. This would be done by amending the bylaws of the party.

10:50 am: Jayalalithaa’s memorial at the Marina beach in Chennai had been decked up on Friday amid talks of a possible merger of two warring factions of AIADMK. AIADMK supporters were already at the former chief minister’s memorial and OPS also had to hold a press meet which was delayed. The deal was, however, not finalised because of few “ticklish issues” between the OPS and the EPS which needed to be addressed by both groups. Read| AIADMK merger Live Updates: Merger between EPS-OPS camps delayed. Click here

10:20 am: Panneerselvam has likely been offered the post of deputy chief minister. Apart from this, it is learnt that he has also been given the portfolios of PWD and Highways. The two mentioned portfolios get a large share of the state’s budgetary allocation and are hence prominent. Sources also suggest that the final deal also includes the promise of two more ministerial berths for the OPS camp, besides key posts for at least top 10 leaders in the party or government — such as those of district secretary or influential posts in state boards.

10:00 am: AIADMK Amma faction veteran and Education Minister K A Sengottaiyan talking about the merger on Sunday said, “It will be good decision and it will happen to the liking of the cadres and people.”

9:40 am: According to party sources as reported by PTI, Monday is considered auspicious in the wake of it being ‘Amavasya.’ Hence, there is a chance of the merger deal getting sealed.

9:20 am: Talking about the removal of V K Sasikala from the party, a senior ruling faction leader said the decision would be taken in a month. “We cannot remove Sasikala immediately even if OPS insists,” he said. According to sources, the OPS camp is learnt to have been promised that a presidium committee, co-chaired by OPS and EPS, would be formed to control the party’s affairs until the process of Sasikala’s ouster is complete. Read: Stage set for merger of ADMK factions. Click here

9:05 am: Amid the AIADMK merger talks gaining strength, Governor of Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu C Vidyasagar Rao cancelled all his appointments in Mumbai. He will be soon in Chennai according to his PRO.

aiadmk merger, aiadmk merger news, aiadmk merger live updates, OPS, panneerselvam, EPS, palaniswami, sasikala, TTV dinakaran, tamil nadu politics, AIADMK news AIADMK merger: O Panneerselvam with C Vidyasagar Rao (Source: ANI/FILE)

8.45 am: O Panneerselvam demanded the chief minister post or the position of AIADMK general secretary. However, a united AIADMK is expected to give him a new post ‘equivalent’ to general secretary, besides the Deputy CM post that has been offered to him. TTV Dhinakaran, however, could sabotage the deal as he has the backing of 20 MLAs.

8.30 am: OPS group, led by Panneerselvam, had severed ties with AIADMK to form a separate outfit-AIADMK (Puratchi Thalaivi)-in February. Ahead of the merger talks, OPS on Saturday saying a positive result was expected in a day or two. “I had informed that the merger talks are already progressing smoothly. It has progressed one more step…A good decision will be attained shortly as desired by you,” he told media persons after a meeting with his party functionaries. Sources also allege that both the factions are under pressure from the BJP to make the formal announcement on Monday, a day before the scheduled visit of party president Amit Shah.

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