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OPS gives in, AIADMK factions likely to announce merger on Monday



OPS gives in, AIADMK factions likely to announce merger on Monday

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]The AIADMK factions led by Tamil Nadu chief minister Edappadi Palaniswami and his predecessor O Panneerselvam had almost worked out the merger planon Friday and were to announce it at the Marina memorial of J Jayalalithaa but the announcement was delayed due to hard negotiations from both sides

After several rounds of hectic deliberations and a ‘false alarm’ that saw hundreds of AIADMK supporters line up at late chief minister J Jayalalithaa’s memorial at Marina beach on Friday night, it appears that the merger plans of the party’s rival factions led by chief minister Edappadi Palaniswami and his predecessor O Panneerselvam are now final.

If sources within the two rival camps are to be believed, the merger of the Palaniswami (EPS) and Panneerselvam (OPS) camps is likely to be formalised on Monday to coincide with the lunar phenomenon of Amavasya (new moon night) which is considered auspicious in Tamil Nadu.

On Friday – a day after EPS accepted the Panneerselvam faction’s key demand of announcing a judicial probe into Jayalalithaa’s death and converting her Veda Nilayam residence in Chennai’s Poes Garden into a memorial – the two rival camps had come close to announcing the merger. The big announcement was to be made by the two factional leaders – EPS and OPS – at Jayalalithaa’s memorial on Marina Beach, which had even been decked up with flowers and lights.

However, as the two factions continued to discuss the fine-print of the merger till late on Friday night, the mammoth crowd that had arrived at Amma’s (as Jayalalithaa is popularly referred to) memorial braving heavy showers, began to disperse.

There was speculation in the local media that the merger announcement was delayed due to dissensions within the OPS camp and since the Tamil Nadu chief minister declined to give in to several demands made by Panneerselvam – key among them being huge representation of his faction in the state cabinet, various corporations and also the party. EPS is learnt to have accepted only a few names put forth by OPS for key assignments and portfolios within the party and his government.

On Saturday, in an indication that he had accepted the terms outlined by OPS, Panneerselvam said that the merger talks are “going smoothly” and that a “good decision can be expected in a day or two”.

Panneerselvam, who spoke to media persons at his Greenways Road residence where he had been busy in parleys with members of his camp, also dismissed reports of dissensions within his ranks.

Sources said that the delay in announcing the merger could also be because of Palaniswami’s reluctance in accepting the OPS camp’s demand of him publicly announcing that jailed interim general secretary of the AIADMK VK Sasikala – a close aide of the late Jayalalithaa who had attempted an intra-party coup against OPS when he was chief minister and eventually caused his ouster – stood expelled from the party.

The OPS faction had also been pressing for a formula under which EPS could continue as chief minister while Panneerselvam would be named AIADMK general secretary. However, it appears that this demand has been dismissed and Panneerselvam might have to settle for the deputy chief minister’s post.

Meanwhile, both EPS and OPS factions seem to have hit a hurdle over the announcement of converting Veda Nilayam into a museum showcasing the life and career of Jayalalithaa. The former AIADMK chief’s niece, Deepa Jayakumar, has not only questioned Palaniswami’s decision of a probe into Amma’s death but has also opposed the move to convert her residence into a museum.

“For madam Jayalalithaa, the only legal heirs are myself and my brother Deepak. We have not been consulted about turning her residence into a museum… they have no legal right to make this announcement without consulting us,” Jayakumar told media persons in Chennai.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text css=”.vc_custom_1503147349171{padding-top: 5px !important;padding-right: 5px !important;padding-bottom: 5px !important;padding-left: 5px !important;background-color: #b2b2b2 !important;border-radius: 10px !important;}”]

Background to the factional feud

In the days prior to Amma’s death, the party had elected Panneerselvam to act as chief minister and he was sworn-in to the office immediately after Jayalalithaa was pronounced dead. However, in the days following her demise, while Sasikala was still contemplating her political moves, Panneerselvam announced that he had “heard the voice of his conscience and of Amma” and will stay on as chief minister. Sasikala’s faction of the party had come out in open rebellion against OPS, calling him a traitor, and imploring Sasikala to take over as chief minister.

However, the Supreme Court convicted Sasikala for four years in a disproportionate assets case, effectively nixing any chance of her taking on the executive role after which EPS was sworn-in as chief minister. The party has ever since been divided into three factions, those led by Sasikala and her nephew TTV Dhinakaran, OPS and EPS.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]The merger between these rival AIADMK factions is crucial for the party to get back its election symbol – two leaves – which the Election Commission had suspended after the split. Also, since Amma’s demise, the party has been floundering in search of one leader behind which the cadre can stand firmly. This has left the political space in Tamil Nadu wide open for the party’s principal political rival – M Karunanidhi’s DMK. Perhaps more importantly, the factional feuds is also giving a golden opportunity to the BJP to either gain its own space in Tamil Nadu politics or work towards an alliance with whichever faction of the AIADMK gives it more tactical strength.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Latest Politics News

Shiv Sena, BJP to fight Lok Sabha elections together: CM Eknath Shinde declares after meeting Amit Shah

Shinde informed the meeting was held with Shah yesterday night.



Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Monday, posting a picture from his meeting with Union Home Minister Amit Shah announced the BJP and Shiv Sena to unitedly fight all the upcoming elections including the Lok Sabha elections in the state.

Shinde tweeted a picture, in which along with him and Shah, Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis can also be seen.

Shinde informed the meeting was held with Shah yesterday night.

Shinde in the caption with the picture informed, in the meeting, it was decided that the ruling BJP-Shiv Sena in Maharashtra to contest all the upcoming elections in the state together, which includes the state assembly elections, local body elections and the mega 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Shinde added, for the sake of Maharashtra’s development, their alliance is strong and in the past 11 months of the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance, the government has taken major steps towards progress of the state and has also given permission to the policies that were at halt.

Confident Shinde said, in the future elections, they will contest together and will win with majority to make Maharashtra as the top ranking state in the country.

The Maharashtra CM further added, discussions related to agriculture and cooperative department also held in the meeting with Shah.

Shinde also hoped for the continuous guidance of Prime Minister Narendra Modi towards the implementation of policies for development of Maharashtra.

Shinde was a Thackeray family loyalist until last year, when he along with 15 other MLAs in a dramatic turn of events  went against then Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, which resulted to the the collapse of Maha Vikash Aghadi government in the state and the formation of BJP-Shiv Sena alliance government with Shinde taking over as the Chief Minister.

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Telugu Desam Party chief  Chandrababu Naidu meets Amit Shah, Nadda, speculation of BJP-TDP alliance

Reports said, both the parties may go into an alliance for the upcoming elections. The meeting between the leaders lasted for about half an hour.



Chandrababu Naidu

Telugu Desam Party chief Chandrababu Naidu on Saturday evening, met BJP president JP Nadda and Union Home Minister Amit Shah in Delhi to reportedly discuss an alliance ahead of the Telangana assembly election this year and 2024 general elections. The meeting lasted for an hour.

Reports said, both the parties may go into an alliance for the upcoming elections. The meeting between the leaders lasted for about half an hour.

During the Narendra Modi led NDA came to the power at Centre in 2014, Naidu’s TDP was a part of the alliance until March 2018, when it broke the alliance on the special status issue to Andhra Pradesh.

The decision that was taken by Naidu just before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, he had then said it was in concern with the Centre overlooking Andhra Pradesh in the annual budget of the Centre.

Both the parties came together after the recent municipal elections in Port Blair. In March this year the Port-Blair municipal elections the TDP emerged as the kingmaker backing the BJP in the council formation.

If the two parties extended ties, it is expected to come as a shot in the arm for the BJP which has an aspiring target of expanding its footprint in Andhra Pradesh and and other southern region.

The Centre ruled party recently lost the Karnataka assembly elections, the lone southern state, where the party was in power.

However, the failure of the Karnataka Assembly elections has shifted BJP’s senior leadership’s attention to other states in South India, particularly Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, where the party does not want to give the Congress any influence.

Reports said, while the TDP has emerged as one of the key opposition parties in Telangana, it has struggled to find support among the politically dominant castes in Andhra Pradesh.

Amid the speculations of an alliance between the TDP and BJP, both the parties have been throwing signals about a possible alliance in the near future.

The TDP recently distanced itself from the opposition’s move to boycott the Parliament inauguration event and marked its presence.

Reports said, the BJP leadership has made Telangana the party’s priority in its Mission South and has advanced in the state’s local body elections.

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India News

War of words breaks out between BJP, Congress over Rahul Gandhi’s saying Muslim League is a secular party

Former Congress President and MP Mr. Rahul Gandhi got criticized by the BJP Leaders in India after his comment on the Muslim League is completely secular



Rahul Gandhi

Several BJP leaders were quick to pounce on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s comment at the National Press Club in Washington DC calling the Muslim League a secular party.

In his interaction in Washington DC, Rahul Gandhi said the Muslim League is a completely secular party and is in alliance with the Muslim League in Kerala as part of the United Democratic Front. Gandhi said there is nothing non-secular about the Muslim League and questioned the reporter’s knowledge about the Muslim League.

Senior BJP leaders said Rahul Gandhi is insulting India from foreign shores. Uttar Pradesh Deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya said Rahul Gandhi should apologise for his comments and should speak about it to the people in India once he is here.

Union Minister Prahlad Singh Patel said he does not take Rahul Gandhi seriously and blamed the comment on a Congress tendency. He said the comment was dangerous as such seeds of division can grow up to be challenges to the country.

Former Law Minister and BJP leader Kiren Rijiju criticised Rahul Gandhi’s statement on the Muslim League’s secular character. BJP IT Cell chief Amit Malviya criticized Rahul Gandhi on Twitter.

In response, Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera hit out at Malviya on Twitter and questioned the BJP IT Cell chief’s wisdom and awareness about the Muslim League. He schooled him about the difference between the Indian Union Muslim League in Kerala and the Muslim League of Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

During the Washington DC interaction, Rahul Gandhi held forth on various topics including the party’s chances in the 2024 Lok Sabha, the move for Opposition unity to take on the BJP and the perils of unemployment that has been encircling India. Gandhi said his party was holding regular dialogue with all Opposition parties, there is a lot of good work happening in that regard.

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