The Chief Minister claims he is running out of patience with the OPS faction.

Edappadi Palaiswami flexes muscle says 90 of party cadre back him as Chief Minister
news Politics Monday, May 01, 2017 - 08:46

With talks for a possible merger between the two AIADMK faction hitting a roadblock, Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami made his stand on the fight for the state's top post clear on Sunday. Palaniswami, while addressing office bearers and cadre in Salem, claimed that 90% of the party's office bearers were with the 'official faction' led by him.

Read: EPS-OPS merger fail: Isn't this proof that Sasikala family still calls the shots in AIADMK?

There has been little or no official communication between both factions regarding the merger, following the formation of seven member committees by both sides. Team OPS is reportedly suspicious over who is really calling the shots for a merger and believe it could be a ruse to claim the two leaves symbol that has presently been frozen by the Election Commission.

To add fuel to this burning doubt, was Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami who met with AIADMK district secretaries over three days –Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday – asking them to submit affidavits to the Election Commission in support of the appointment of VK Sasikala and TTV Dhinakaran.

The CM apparently also reeled out statistics regarding the support he had among the district secretaries and MLAs. According to his count, 48 of the 50 district secretaries, 123 MLAs and 29 MPs supported his faction. Recalling that former Chief Minister O Panneerselvam called for merger talks with no preconditions, Palaniswami said, "But in a sudden volte-face, they threw two demand, one of which is a case in the court and the other is an issue pending before the Election Commission. The demands are a ploy to derail the merger talks."

He further warned that the faction's only aim is to defeat the DMK but that there was 'a limit to our patience'.

The DMK meanwhile has sharpened its attack against the OPS faction. The party's working President MK Stalin alleged that the "selective raids and selective arrests" indicated that the NDA favoured the AIADMK (Puratchi Thalaivi Amma).

“It is now crystal clear that it is the hand of the BJP, which is in control of the Union government. The BJP is directing this blindly obvious one-sided use of `selective raids' and 'selective arrests' against one faction of the AIADMK, by turning a blind eye and allowing strong incriminating evidence against the other faction of the AIADMK to gather dust," said Stalin in a video on his Twitter account.



He further claimed that this was a desperate bid by the BJP to gain foothold in Tamil Nadu. "Why has the BJP government resorted to low tactics like raiding sitting state ministers, intimidating IAS officers to the extent that they have totally paralyzed the state government?" he asked. “I urge Prime Minster Narendra Modi to ensure Tamil Nadu has a legitimate and stable government which functions with full powers of every state government as enshrined in the Constitution,” he added.

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