Posters have surfaced in Tamil Nadu’s Tirunelveli blaming AIADMK coordinator and former Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami for losing the recent Assembly elections, triggering a controversy on Wednesday. The posters supporting AIADMK coordinator O Panneerselvam were seen in prominent places in Manur and even threatened that AIADMK members would march towards the party headquarters at Royapettah in Chennai if decisions are taken without consulting OPS. The poster read, “Do not take any decision without consulting coordinator O Panneerselvam, who was identified as the leader for party matters by Amma (former TN Chief Minister Jayalalithaa). We lost the elections since we did not listen to him. So, if this continues, we will march towards the party headquarters.”
The poster was seemingly signed by the Manur AIADMK unit, Tirunelveli district. However, the party is yet to identify the individuals who were responsible for sticking the poster. The posters surfaced even as AIADMK is wrestling with two ongoing problems — the difference of opinion between Edappadi K Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam, and audio leaks of Jayalalithaa’s former aide VK Sasikala, where she promises to enter politics.
Recently, several audio leaks with Sasikala promising a political entry are surfacing online. In the audio, Sasikala is heard appealing to her supporters in the AIADMK camp and promising cadres that she will enter politics and lead the party. However, on Friday, Edappadi K Palaniswami announced that VK Sasikala and her family have no place in the party and this will be their stand. He said, "She (Sasikala) is interacting with Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam cadre (led by her nephew TTV Dhinakaran) and there is nothing more to it." However, this announcement was made in the absence of party coordinator O Panneerselvam.
When asked why OPS was not present, the opposition leader said that it was not a scheduled meeting and he had visited the office since it was an auspicious day. He said OPS did not turn up since he had another event to attend on Friday. However, in a bid to break the ice, O Panneerselvam and Edappadi K Palaniswami met at a hotel in Chennai the next day. It is said that the two leaders met as they have a growing difference of opinion on a range of issues, including inducting Sasikala into the party.