Updated: March 15, 2018 2:48:24 pm
Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam — is the new party that TTV Dhinakaran, beleaguered AIADMK leader and Independent MLA from R K Nagar, launched in Madurai’s Melur town on Thursday, choosing to name it after Jayalalithaa. The name roughly translates to Amma People’s Progress Front. The party flag, which was also unveiled on the day, also bears the image of the late leader.
“Jayalalithaa was the reflection of Anna, MGR and Periyar — let it be any election. We will be functioning under this name. We will work for the poor and downtrodden, for the farmers and to ensure water in Cauvery,” said Dhinakaran at the launch.
Thousands of supporters turned up for the party’s launch. “I’m one of you and I’m contesting for you people,” Dhinakaran told them. Banners and hoardings hailing Dhinakaran as the “future chief minister” were put up at several roads and junctions. Former ministers V Senthil Balaji and P Palaniappan, senior leader S Anbazhagan, disqualified MLAs and Dhinakaran loyalists, including P Vetrivel and Thanga Tamil Selvan, attended the event.
Cadres at the event claimed that it “overshadowed” party functions, including the Ilangyar Pasarai-Illam Pengal Pasarai at Theni, held by “betrayers” (ruling AIADMK led by K Palaniswami).
The ‘pasarai,’ event had witnessed an attendance of about 50,000 cadres, according to the ruling AIADMK
The launch comes weeks after the Delhi High Court on March 9 allowed Dhinakaran to use the “pressure cooker” symbol and give a name of his choice for the AIADMK faction led by him.
Reacting to Dhinakaran’s party launch, AIADMK leader D Jayakumar said, “It was basically a mosquito, when it came and when it flew back no one knew, it was a ‘shani’ over our party which has now gone”
Dhinakaran won Chennai’s R K Nagar seat, represented by former Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa, in December. The bypoll was necessitated after Jayalalithaa’s death. He has the support of 22 MLAs.
Actor-politician Kamal Haasan also recently floated his party ‘Makkal Needhi Maiam’ in Madurai. On December 31, Tamil superstar Rajinikanth had announced his decision to enter politics but he is yet to launch a party.
Last year in August, Sasikala, a close aide of Jayalalithaa, and Dhinakaran were stripped of their posts and expelled from the party following the merger of the two main AIADMK factions under the leadership of Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and his deputy O Panneerselvam. The two were also arrested on charges of bribery.
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