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EPS camp sends feelers to TTV faction MLAs
At a time when the Opposition parties are eagerly awaiting the Madras High Court order in the 18 MLAs disqualification case, the ruling AIADMK faction led by CM Edappadi Palaniswami and deputy CM O Panneerselvam has started sending feelers to some suspended MLAs urging them to reject rebel leader TTV Dhinakaran and rejoin the AIADMK.
While the TTV camp is zeroing in on Health Minister C Vijaya Baskar who is not comfortable with the recent CBI raids at his residence and some other MLAs who apparently feel neglected, the AIADMK elevated Vijaya Baskar as the party organising secretary. According to AIADMK sources, forty-four-year-old Vijaya Baskar is now the youngest leader among the dozen organising secretaries.
The party, facing pressure due to multiple IT and CBI raids, is now working overtime to keep its flock together and has instructed the district secretaries and senior functionaries to gear up for the bypolls and the elections to the Lok Sabha.
Dairy development minister KT Rajendra Balaji on Friday extended an olive branch to Theni-based disqualified MLA Thangathamizh Selvan in the rival TTV camp. “Thangathamizh Selvan should rejoin the parent organisation and support the Edappadi-led government which is serving the public,” Rajendra Balaji said while participating in a public function.
Senior ministers D Jayakumar and Sellur K Raju had also openly invited the rebel MLAs to rejoin the parent organisation to ensure that arch-rival DMK is kept at bay. “They have been trying to woo some of our functionaries and disqualified MLAs, but no one is switching loyalty from our camp. In fact, some of the AIADMK MLAs are now in talks with AMMK and they would soon join under the leadership of TTV Dhinakaran,” AMMK strongman P Vettrivel told DT Next.
Earlier in the day, Palaniswami and Panneerselvam issued a joint statement urging the cadre to start working for the bypolls and the Lok Sabha elections. The AIADMK also appointed former Speaker PH Pandian as the legal advisor of the party.