The political drama in Tamil Nadu has reached the courts. As the MLAs of AIADMK are shut up inside farmhouses and hotels in and around Chennai, a voter from Kunnam constituency has decided to file a Habeas Corpus petition.
Represented by Balu, a PMK lawyer, the voter told the court that he wanted to file an emergency Habeas Corpus because he couldn’t reach his MLA, RT Ramachandran, and that Ramachandran has been missing since he went to the AIADMK Headquarters in Chennai to attend a meeting.
“He did not even have a change of clothes, and he doesn’t have access to a phone, he is not being allowed to contact anyone,” the lawyer apparently told the court.
Despite visuals of MLAs at a farmhouse near Chennai being available publicly, the Additional Public Prosecutor in his reply claimed that the MLAs were all safe and at the MLA hostel, clearly twisting the truth.
“When we asked him how many MLAs were at the MLA hostel, the APP did not have an answer,” lawyer Balu told Sun News.
Meanwhile, activist ‘Traffic’ Ramaswamy also mentioned to the court that 130 MLAs are being held captive against their will, and that the court should order that they be released immediately since there are questions over their safety.
While the High Court has not accepted an emergency petition in either case, the judges have asked the petitioners to follow the rules and file a formal petition, following which the lawyer filed a Habeas Corpus.
Lawyer Balu claimed that the judge also asked the petitioner, “Aren’t the MLAs living in considerable luxury?”
“I replied that although he might be living in a comfortable hotel, he doesn’t even have a change of clothes and he isn’t allowed to contact anyone,” Balu told Sun News.
On Thursday afternoon, another attempt at bringing out the hidden MLAs was launched, when the husband of the MLA from Krishnarayapuram filed a habeas corpus petition asking that his wife Geetha, who is in the Sasikala camp, be found.
The petitions are another front in the OPS vs Sasikala battle raging in Tamil Nadu. While OPS has claimed that he will have the support of MLAs on the floor of the House, Sasikala clearly seems to have the numbers.
After a meeting with Sasikala at the AIADMK HQ on Wednesday, around 130 party MLAs were herded into 3 buses, and taken to undisclosed locations, to ensure that they do not jump ship into OPS’s camp.
Reports have revealed that some MLAs are holed up in a farmhouse near Chennai, while others are in a resort.