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Palaniswami, Panneerselvam say symbol ruling a body blow to Dhinakaran faction

24 November, 2017, 01:46 | Author: Hannah Francis
  • OPS-EPS led AIADMK gets two leaves symbol

The ownership of the symbol of two leaves, which the Jayalalithaa-led AIADMK carried for years, before the her death on December 5 last year, came under question after the EPS, OPS and Sasikala factions along with Dinakaran started fighting over it.

What might come as a setback for V Sasikala, who is now lodged in a Bengaluru prison, the Election Commission of India (ECI) declared that the 'two-leaves' party symbol belonged to the E Palaniswamy and O Panneerselvam faction and not the VK Sasikala-TTV Dinakaran camp.

In 1989, the AIADMK factions led by party founder MGR's widow Janaki and his heroine in 28 films Jayalalithaa contested the Assembly elections on the "two pigeons" and "rooster" symbols respectively.

The poll panel recognised the faction led by Palaniswami and Panneerselvam as the real AIADMK (All India Anna Dravida Munnethra Kazhagam), rejecting the claim of jailed party leader V K Sasikala and her nephew, T T V Dinakaran.

With this decision, it was evident that Edappadi Palaniswami has the support of 111 MLAs and Government has no majority, he said. We are happy and the party's 1.5 crore members will be happy.

The OPS faction challenged Sasikala's appointment saying she did not fulfil the requirement of continuous/uninterrupted membership of the party for five years.

The OPS faction will be entitled to use the name of the party and its reserved symbol, Two Leaves.

Dinakaran fought hard for the symbol and also control of the party, albeit abortively.

Earlier in the day, Palaniswami said the EC has allotted the disputed symbol to his faction. Though this was famously referred to as a "merger" of both factions, a faction of the party led by Mr. Dhinakaran functioned as a separate entity. The order is a setback to deposed party leader VK Sasikala, who is now serving a four-year sentence in a Bengaluru jail in a disproportionate assets case, and her nephew and sidelined deputy general secretary TTV Dhinakaran.

Palaniswami was with Sasikala and Dinakaran then and replaced Panneerselvam as the chief minister after Sasikala's ascent to the helm of the party.


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