CHENNAI: After the daylong heated arguments put forward by the senior counsels of both the AIADMK leaders Edappadi K Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam, the Madras High Court on Thursday reserved the orders on the appeal filed by EPS challenging the status quo order of a single judge on a civil suit filed by his rival against the July 11 General Council meeting.
The second bench consisting of Justice M Duraiswamy and Justice Sunder Mohan adjourned the matter without mentioning the date for pronouncing the orders. The bench directed senior advocates appearing for either side to submit the written submissions before 3 pm on Friday.
A battery of senior lawyers, including CS Vaidyanathan, Arima Sundaram, and S Vijay Narayan, represented the Leader of the Opposition. Meanwhile, senior counsels Guru Krishnakumar, and Arvind Pandian argued for OPS and senior advocate AK Sri Ram appeared for the supporter of OPS named Amman P Vairamuthu, a general council member of AIADMK from Nanganallur.
The crux of the argument between both parties was about the powers of the General Council. While EPS’ side submitted that GC is the supreme body in the party, OPS’ counsels submitted that the primary members are more powerful in the party as per the bye-laws drafted by party MGR.
Senior Advocate Vaidyanathan submitted that the findings of the single judge is illegal, arbitrary, and against the law. “The single judge had directed both the coordinator and joint coordinator to jointly convene the GC and EC meetings. However, they cannot come together and the judgment has put an irreparable hardship on the AIADMK and its cadres,” the senior advocate submitted.
He further submitted that the invite for the July 11 GC meeting was given on the requisition of 2190 GC members. “However, the single judge wanted to know whether the 2,190 GC members are the representatives of 1.5 crores of AIADMK members. The finding cannot be sustainable as the GC members are elected through the primary members, ” the senior counsel submitted.
EPS’ side further submitted that the single judge could not expect quantifiable data regarding the support for the single leadership in the party as 2,190 GC members gave the requisition.
They further submitted that OPS have approached the court only for the sake of his right but not for the party workers. “The single judge had given the status quo order which was not even sought by the plaintiff in his petition,” counsels representing EPS submitted.
Senior Counsels Guru Krishnakumar and Arvind Pandian for OPS noted that the invitation for the GC meeting should be jointly given by the coordinator and joint coordinator. They also claimed that a 15-day clear notice should be given before the GC meeting. “There is no Rule in the Bye-law that the coordinator and joint coordinator positions will fall vacant if the GC fails to extend the ratification,” the OPS side argued.
Senior counsel AK Sriram for Vairamuthu informed the HC that when the coordinators and joint coordinators are elected by the primary members based on the amendment brought in the EC, it is unnecessary to get the ratification of the GC.
Recording these submissions, the judges adjourned the matter for orders.